Shot man faces arrest
The man hospitalized after being shot in the knees Monday may face attempted assault charges, while the man who shot him will probably not be charged, according to the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office.
Steven C. Fowler, 34, reportedly shot Richard F. Everton, 35, with a 12-gauge shotgun on the 18200 block of Traighli Lane, south of Grass Valley, after Everton charged at him, according to authorities.
While the cause of the altercation has not officially been determined, it was probably fueled by a property dispute, according to the sheriff’s department and Fowler, who said he was threatened by Everton in the days leading up to Monday.
Fowler said Everton had been a tenant on the Fowler family’s property for more than a year after Everton lost his home in a fire and his girlfriend left him.
He said the two went to high school together and were friends for a long time. That is why Everton turned to him for help, Fowler said.
“He said (back then) he wants to clean up his act, and I said this is the perfect opportunity for him,” Fowler said.
But by November 2003, the property was a mess, a horse living there was starving, and several of Fowler’s parents’ belongings – such as a generator, a car and horse saddles – were stolen, Fowler said. So he told Everton he had to move out.
Three months later, Everton had still not moved out, so Fowler called the sheriff’s office. On Feb. 12, Fowler said, he and a sheriff’s deputy went to the property and Everton happened to drive by. The deputy followed but Everton got away, ditching his car along the way, Fowler said.
“Ninety percent of what was in that vehicle belonged to my dad,” Fowler said.
Two days later, Everton called him and threatened him, Fowler said.
Monday, while Fowler was cleaning up the property, Everton showed up with a friend and threatened him again, Fowler said. Then, according to Fowler, Everton came at him, and Fowler fired one shotgun blast at the man’s knees.
Fowler then called authorities and reported the shooting.
Sheriff’s Lt. Lee Osborne said the department still has to conduct a few interviews with witnesses, after which they will take the case to the district attorney for review. Everton’s friend reportedly disappeared before deputies arrived at the scene and is being sought by authorities.
Osborne said the shooting was probably in self defense.
According to county court records, Everton has a criminal history, including theft and traffic infractions. He also has a warrant for his arrest, court documents show.
He was taken to Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital on Monday with wounds to both legs and then transported by ground ambulance to Sutter Roseville Medical Center. He was in fair condition Tuesday morning.
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