Home News Local News Case of fourth suspect in August shooting heads to District Court

Case of fourth suspect in August shooting heads to District Court

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The case of a man charged in connection with a shooting in August that left one man wounded, will be bound over to District Court.

Dellavecchio

E.J. Fouratt, Chaves County Magistrate Court Division II judge, ruled at a Nov. 6 preliminary hearing that there was sufficient evidence that crimes were committed Aug. 29 when a man was shot at a 1614 S. Washington Ave. residence, and that there was probable cause to suggest Thomas Dellavecchio committed those crimes.

Dellavecchio, 42, of Roswell, is charged with false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a firearm or a destructive device by a felon and conspiracy to commit aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

David Clements, 30, Veronica Perez, 32 and Jessica Tarleton, 34 — the owner of the house where the shooting occurred — were all arrested on charges related to the shooting and their cases have already been bound over to District Court for trial.

Clements is charged with accessory to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment and bribery of a witness.

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Tarleton is charged with being an accessory to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and false imprisonment.

Perez has been charged with false imprisonment and tampering with evidence.

Dellavecchio, Clements and Tarleton are presently being held at the Chaves County Detention Center, according to a Jail Population Summary Report.

Court documents show Perez was released on personal recognizance in August soon after her arrest.

Frank Patterson, Dellavecchio’s attorney, did not call any witnesses to testify during the hearing, but the prosecution represented by Lance Jagger called the victim to the stand.

The victim testified that Dellavecchio and Clements both approached him on Aug. 29 in the living room of Tarleton’s house, each holding a gun. He said Dellavecchio was armed at the time with a handgun and Clements with a shotgun or rifle.

He said that he does not remember which gun the bullet came from but that it hit the right side of his jaw and exited the left side of his neck.

“I just know that I saw two guns, there was yelling and I got shot,” the victim said.

Jagger said in closing remarks that he believes Dellavecchio and Clements intended to harm the victim and because of the concept of accomplice liability and conspiracy, both can face charges of assault and battery with a deadly weapon, regardless of which gun the bullet came from.

The victim also testified that he was held against his will by Tarleton, Dellavecchio, Perez and Clements after he was shot, until they decided to drive him to a local hospital.

The victim said that weeks before he was shot, he was living with Tarleton when he discovered that her room had been broken into. She yelled at him when he called to tell her it appeared that her room had been broken into. He said that she then told him that he had to move out of the house.

The victim said that he had not talked with Tarleton until the day of the shooting and that he went to the house when she texted him.

The victim testified that when he was invited over he did not think anything was wrong.

He testified that when he arrived at Tarleton’s house, he was greeted at the door by Perez and that when he came in, he and Tarleton engaged in some light conversation as she showed him a tattoo that she recently had redone and then after he sat down, was asked if his girlfriend had been in the house.

The victim testified that he told Tarleton no.

Tarleton then asked him if her neighbors were lying to her, to which he had said yes.

The victim testified that he heard some noise coming from the hallway and that Clements and Dellavecchio each came into the living room with their guns aimed at him.

Seconds later he was shot.

He testified that after he was shot, he fell to the floor.

“At this moment, I was scared for my life, so I just fell to the floor,” he said.

The four other people in the room then became hysterical, and when he heard them leave the living room, he got up and headed for the front door.

He testified when he reached the front door, Perez saw him and told the others that the victim was trying to get away, pulled him back into the house against his will and shut the front door.

The victim testified that he was then taken to the back door of the house where Clements told him not to say anything about the incident “or we will come back and finish the job.”

Tarleton and Perez then took him to the bathroom, where he stood bleeding over the bathtub.

The victim testified that while he stood bleeding over the bathtub, Perez showed a video of what she said was him placing a black bag into the trunk of a vehicle and asked him what was in the bag.

He testified that before he could lift his head to view the footage, the video ended and Perez seemed reluctant to play the video again.

When asked by the prosecution how long he was in the bathtub before he was taken to the hospital, the victim said he does not know but guesses that it was about 30 to 40 minutes.

Patterson then asked the victim if he was shown a line up of pictures by police.

The victim testified that he had and identified Dellavecchio based on two pictures that were shown to him, one from a Facebook page and the other one that he was told was a more recent photo.

He testified that he had never met Dellavecchio before the day of the shooting, but that when he identified Dellavecchio based on photos of numerous individuals, he did so without any doubt.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.