A man charged in connection with a 2018 aggravated assault where one man was shot in the face, will spend two years in prison.
David Clemons, 31, of Roswell, pleaded guilty at a change of plea hearing in 5th Judicial Court in Roswell July 25 to one count of bribery of a witness (threats/false testimony) and one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Judge James Hudson accepted the prosecution’s recommendation and sentenced Clemons to four years in prison on the bribery of a witness charge, with all but one year suspended and to be served on supervised probation. It will be followed by two years of parole.
Clemons was sentenced to an additional two-and-a-half years on the aggravated assault charge, of which 18 months will be served in prison and the other 18 months suspended and served on supervised probation. Clemons will then serve one year on parole.
Both sentences are to run consecutively — one after the other.
In exchange for Clemons’ guilty plea on both charges, the prosecution dropped three other charges: one count of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon; one count of false imprisonment and one count of conspiracy to commit aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.
Clements was one of four people to be charged in an Aug. 29, 2018 shooting at a 1600 block of South Washington Avenue residence that belonged to Jessica Tarleton, 34, of Roswell.
Tarleton, along with Veronica Perez, 33, and Thomas Della Vecchio, 43 — both from Roswell — also faced charges in relation to the shooting.
Perez and Tarleton, like Clemons, initially pleaded not guilty to charges, but have accepted change of plea agreements. As part of her change of plea agreement, Perez received an 18-month suspended prison sentence that is instead being served on supervised probation.
Tarleton accepted the plea agreement but has not yet been sentenced.
Della Vecchio was scheduled to go to trial in July, but that trial has been canceled. No other information about why the trial was canceled was provided.
An affidavit filed by police states the victim told police the day of the shooting that he was shot after he went to Tarleton’s house. He was sitting in the living room talking to Tarleton when two men — later identified as Clements and Della Vecchio — came up from behind him with guns and one of them shot him once in the face.
The affidavit states that the victim later told police he had begun to crawl to the backdoor, but the four other people in the house prevented him from leaving. After keeping him in the bathroom for a time where he was bleeding, Tarleton and Clemons then drove the victim to Lovelace Regional Hospital.
As they were heading to the hospital, the affidavit states the victim told police that Clemons had told him not to tell anyone about the shooting, “or we will come back and finish the job.”
According to affidavit, when police arrived at the South Washington Avenue location, Perez was at the house. When a search warrant was executed, a wet bloody mop was located in the kitchen of the house. Traces of blood were discovered in the bathroom and living room.
Initially, Clements told officers the day of the shooting he and Tarleton took the victim to the hospital after he had shown up at her house bleeding, according to the affidavit.
When Clements was arrested later that day, he changed his story. The affidavit states he told police he had gone to Tarleton’s residence the day of the shooting to “smoke weed” and Della Vecchio was already at the house. He said everything was fine until Della Vecchio came out of the bathroom and shot the victim. Clements said that he and Tarleton then took the victim to the hospital.
Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at email@example.com.