Jury finds Vancouver man guilty of first-degree drug assault in shooting

Convicted on lesser charge, he still faces 10-year prison term

By Paul Suarez, Columbian web producer

Published:

Updated: March 16, 2012, 5:55 PM

 

A Clark County jury on Friday found a man guilty of shooting an acquaintance in the abdomen.

After several hours of deliberation over two days, the jury unanimously voted to convict Reysel Perez-Martinez of one count of first-degree assault. The jury voted to acquit him of first-degree attempted murder.

First-degree assault, a Class A felony, carries a minimum sentence of just under eight years in prison. Jurors returned a special finding that the crime was committed with a deadly weapon, which tacks on an additional two years.

Senior Deputy Prosecutor Camara Banfield said in her closing statements on Thursday that Perez-Martinez went into the home of Eric Luna-Perez, an alleged drug dealer, on the day in question. After a confrontation, prosecutors alleged the defendant pulled a gun on Luna-Perez and shot him in the abdomen and then attempted to shoot him in the head, when the gun misfired.

Defense attorney David Kurtz said Luna-Perez pulled a gun on Perez-Martinez and that the defendant was wrestling with him when the gun discharged, hitting Luna-Perez in the abdomen.

The incident occurred last June 28 at a home in the 10010 block of Northeast 72nd Circle.

Jurors began considering the case midday Thursday after hearing closing arguments from the prosecution and defense.

On Friday, Clark County Superior Court Judge Scott Collier thanked the jury for being attentive during the trial and taking time to deliberate.

“It shows you took this serious and gave it the attention it deserves,” he told the jury.

Sentencing is scheduled for April 27.