A Natrona County man pleaded guilty Wednesday to shooting into a bedroom near Bar Nunn while people were inside.
Lyle J. Clark, 43, entered his pleas to two counts of aggravated assault with habitual criminal enhancements. Prosecutors agreed to lower the enhancement penalties — which had previously carried a potential sentence of life imprisonment — in exchange for his pleas.
The plea deal calls for a judge to sentence Clark to 15 to 25 years imprisonment for his crimes.
During Wednesday’s hearing, Clark said he had shot into the bedroom because he had animosity for the man who lived in the house. He did not detail the reason for his grudge but said he fired the .22 rifle in an attempt to frighten the man.
“It was only an attempt to scare (the man),” he said.
According to court documents, Clark told a sheriff’s office investigator one of the people living in the house had abused his girlfriend when she was a child. The documents do not indicate the nature of the alleged abuse.
Court records indicate that the person alleged to have abused Clark’s girlfriend has never been charged with a crime against a child in Wyoming.
A woman was also present in the bedroom when Clark fired a half dozen rounds into the house.
Judge Daniel Forgey agreed Wednesday to lower Clark’s bond to $50,000. The judge also required that if Clark go free on bond he submit to random alcohol and drug testing and refrain from contacting the victims in the case.
Clark fired into the the bedroom of the house around 1:15 a.m. April 7 and killed a cat, authorities have said. The two people in the room at the time were unharmed.
The two people were lying in bed watching TV when the man got up to put out his cigarette, court documents indicate the man told the deputy.
Bullets then broke through the window and one hit the couple’s cat, according to court documents. The man would have been in the line of fire had he not gotten up, he said.
The cat, Morris, was later euthanized.
After reviewing footage from a nearby security camera and interviewing the alleged victims of the shooting, sheriff’s investigators spoke with Clark.
Clark had stashed the gun in a truck parked on a family member’s property, he told authorities. Sheriff’s deputies searched the property and found the gun, the documents state.