Father Allegedly Used Shotgun To Strike Son
By Mike Perleberg
(Aurora, Ind.) – An Aurora man is in jail accused of firing a shotgun and assaulting his son by striking him with the butt of the gun.
The altercation happened on Wednesday, December 18 at the Cross Road home of Harold Stacy James IV. That evening, Harold James and his adult son, Mitchell James, began a verbal altercation which allegedly escalated into a physical fight, according to a court affidavit filed by investigators with the Dearborn County Sheriff’s Department. They had all been consuming alcohol.
Harold James allegedly began to fight with Mitchell in the home’s kitchen. They broke the kitchen table during the scuffle.
Mitchell James and his friend, Jesse Adams, exited the home. That’s when Harold James allegedly came outside with a .410 shotgun and fired into the air.
Harold James then turned the shotgun around in his hands and struck his son in the face with the butt of the firearm two to three times, according to the affidavit. The alleged striking with the shotgun had caused the firearm to discharge a second time.
A second friend of Mitchell James, Benjamin Prater, attempted to get between Harold and Mitchell when he was allegedly struck from behind by a four-foot level wielded by Harold.
Harold James later told investigators that he used the shotgun and level because Mitchell James continued to come after him. He allegedly admitted to striking James with the level four or five times, and perhaps striking Prater and Adams in the process. James told police that he had to scare Mitchell James in order to get him to leave the residence.
After the fight, Mitchell James was taken to the hospital to be treated for his injuries, including surgery to repair his right arm.
Harold James, 44, is facing 10 felony charges. They include three counts of Battery by Means of a Deadly Weapon (Class C felony); two counts of Intimidation (Class C felony), Criminal Recklessness (Class D felony) and Pointing a Firearm (Class D felony); and one count of Battery Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury (Class C felony).
James was arrested on Sunday, January 12. He remains held in the Dearborn County Law Enforcement Center as of Monday afternoon.