The case against a Casper man charged with shooting toward law enforcement officers during a standoff this month and then damaging a police car will move into felony court, a judge ruled Tuesday.

Zachary Lovelace, 37, faces four counts of aggravated assault and battery, one count of felony property destruction and one count of possession of a deadly weapon with unlawful intent. He appeared Tuesday in Natrona County Circuit Court for his preliminary hearing, where his attorney argued that investigators did not have enough evidence to continue prosecution on one of the aggravated assault charges.

However, Circuit Court Judge Brian Christensen ruled that all six felonies be bound over to District Court.

Law enforcement officers arrested Lovelace after a six-hour standoff while he hid in the attic of a relative’s home on Sharrock Road. He allegedly stole a phone from a man fishing near Bessemer Bend Road and then pointed a gun at the victim, who called 911.

Deputies with the Natrona County Sheriff’s Office used an app on the iPhone to track Lovelace’s location, according to court documents and law enforcement testimony at the hearing Tuesday. For six hours, Lovelace refused to obey commands and exit the home.

At some point during the standoff, members of the Natrona County Special Response team attempted to insert a camera into the attic to see exactly where Lovelace was within the space. Lovelace shot two rounds toward the camera, causing law enforcement to retreat, according to the documents.

Officers then attempted to insert canisters of pepper spray into the vent. During the attempt, Lovelace shot two bullets that exited the house next to the vent, which was located about 4 feet above the officers attempting to place the spray, one investigator said Tuesday.

At least one of those bullets passed near another deputy who was stationed about 700 feet away from the home, the investigator said.

Lovelace was later arrested while attempting to run from the home. He later caused about $3,500 in damage to a Casper police patrol car while an officer took him from the hospital to the Natrona County Detention Center.

Nobody was seriously injured during the standoff.

Lovelace’s attorney, Curtis Cheney, asked the judge Tuesday to lower his client’s bond from $500,000 to $250,000. Christensen denied the request.

Follow crime and courts reporter Elise Schmelzer on Twitter @eliseschmelzer

1
0
1
1
2

Features Editor

Elise Schmelzer joined the Star-Tribune in 2016 after graduating from the University of Missouri and interning at newspapers around the country. As features editor, she oversees arts and culture coverage and reports stories on a broad variety of topics.

Load comments