A family dispute Sunday morning in Arnold turned violent when an uncle shot his nephew, who in a bizarre twist fled the scene and led law enforcement officers on a chase through Calaveras County.
The Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office said Monday that Robert Allan Terry, 36, was arrested on suspicion of shooting and injuring his nephew, Jimmy Terry, 25, of Murphys — a wanted parolee — at the elder Terry’s home on the 1800 block of Rawhide Road.
Also arrested was Jimmy Terry’s girlfriend, Crystal Anne Towle, 24, of Murphys, who, according to the Sheriff’s Office, drove her boyfriend away from the scene and proceeded to evade Angels Camp police officers in hot pursuit.
The couple was later found hiding at a residence on the 19400 block of Sugar Pine Drive in Douglas Flat, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Jimmy Terry was transported to a Modesto-area hospital for treatment of a gunshot wound to his abdomen.
The incident began around 7 a.m. when Terry and his uncle became involved in a verbal dispute at the Rawhide Road residence, a news release from the Sheriff’s Office stated.
The release said the initial dispute between the suspect and victim began a week earlier when Jimmy Terry became upset over his uncle purportedly telling law enforcement about his alleged involvement with thefts in the Arnold and Murphys areas.
Jimmy Terry allegedly charged his uncle after being told to leave the property. His uncle then shot him once in the abdomen with a shotgun, according to the news release.
The Sheriff’s Office stated Terry’s uncle felt that he needed to protect himself from his nephew and had re-filled an empty shotgun shell with rock salt, which was used in the alleged shooting.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Jimmy Terry then fled the scene with Towle because he was a parolee-at-large with an active felony warrant for his arrest from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
While sheriff’s deputies and Angels Camp police were en route to the shooting, an officer saw Terry’s black four-door Audi pass him in the opposite direction going west on Highway 4, the Sheriff’s Office stated.
The Angels Camp police officer turned around and pursued the vehicle, but lost sight of it near Highway 4 and Parrotts Ferry Road.
Anonymous tips eventually led law enforcement officers to the residence on Sugar Pine Drive, where they found Towle hiding, the Sheriff’s Office said. She was placed under arrest but refused to provide investigators with a statement.
An Angels Camp police K-9 unit then helped sheriff’s deputies locate Terry hiding in a crawl space beneath the residence, according to the news release. He received medical treatment at the scene, but also refused to talk to law enforcement and was taken to the hospital.
Robert Allan Terry was booked into Calaveras County Jail on suspicion of assault with a firearm. He was being held in custody on $50,000 bail as of Monday afternoon, according to jail officials.
Towle was booked on suspicion of evading peace officers with disregard for public safety, but was released due to overcrowding at the jail, according to booking logs.
Both Towle and Robert Terry were scheduled to be arraigned in Calaveras County Superior Court today, jail officials said.
Jimmy Terry’s condition was not immediately available Monday.
Sheriff’s Sgt. Chris Hewitt said he was not sure whether any criminal charges related to the incident would be filed against Jimmy Terry. According to Hewitt, it’s up to the state to determine whether to arrest Terry on the warrant when he’s released from the hospital.
The Union Democrat is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Tuesday through Saturday. E-Edition or Print Plus subscribers have full access.
If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access. Circulation: 209-533-3614
Weekly Arts and entertainment guide for Calaveras and Tuolumne counties