Teen Wanted to “Scare” Someone With Playground Shooting
INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — A 16-year-old boy could have easily been killed on Monday evening. He’s in a metro hospital recovering from a gunshot wound to the knee.
The teen never saw it coming. That’s because 18-year-old Jeffrey Dowell of Independence fired the shot from his backyard. Dowell has he didn’t mean to shoot anyone, he just wanted to scare them. When he took aim at the a playground, police say the result could’ve been deadly.
The boy who was hit was sitting on a swing on the playground of Elm Grove Elementary when the shooting happened.
“It’s very devastating,” said neighbor Debbie Albertson. “It’s scary living next door to someone like that. I hope the little kid is okay.”
The victim is expected to recover but next door neighbor Debbie Albertson still can’t believe someone would fire a rifle at a playground where kids were playing.
“I can’t even imagine,” Albertson said. “If I was a parent I would prosecute to the full extent.”
Police were led to Dowell’s house after interviewing a number of kids. Detectives say Dowell’s own brother turned him in saying he had pointed his rifle at the school before. Dowell admitted to detectives that he could see the victim through the scope of his rifle. But insisted he just meant to hit the pole next to the kid but he knew he might hit the kid by mistake and fired anyway
“He’s an 18-year-old, he’s an adult,” Albertson said. “H e should pay the consequences ”
According to court documents detectives asked Dowell if he was the shooter and they say his eyes immediately began to water. They say Dowell began to nod his head up and down and answering yes. He later told police he just meant to scare someone.
Dowell is charged with assault and armed criminal action. If the bullet fired from his back deck had been a few inches higher, the charge might’ve been manslaughter.