Indiana

The following vignettes describe the circumstances for killings not ruled self-defense by private individuals with permits to carry concealed handguns. The incidents below all occurred in Indiana. The descriptions include the current, known status of any charges filed against the concealed carry killer as reported by news sources as well as noting instances where the perpetrator committed suicide.

The Violence Policy Center welcomes any new information regarding the status of any case (with verifiable source(s)). Use this link to contact the VPC: http://www.vpc.org/contact.htm.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Kanisha Shelton UNINTENTIONAL

Date: April 20, 2016
Total Killed: 1

Circumstances:
On April 20, 2016, a two-year-old boy unintentionally shot himself after finding his mother’s .380 Bersa pistol in her purse. According to police, the boy’s mother, Kanisha Shelton, 23, had “momentarily stepped away” when the toddler climbed to the kitchen counter, removed the pistol from her purse, and shot himself in the shoulder. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition and later died. The mother had a concealed carry permit.

UPDATE: On May 5, 2016, Kanisha Shelton, 23, was charged with neglect of a dependent resulting in death. According to court documents, Shelton told police her son sometimes climbed onto the chairs against the counter where she left her purse and gun and that he got into her purse “all of the time.”

Source: “Mother charged with neglect after son fatally shot himself makes first court appearance,” www.fox59.com, May 11, 2016; “Child, 2, kills self with gun from mom’s purse,” Indianapolis Star, April 21, 2016.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Qing Chen  SUICIDE

Date: March 10, 2016
Total Killed: 2 (including shooter)

Circumstances:
On March 10, 2016, concealed handgun permit holder Qing Chen, 37, shot and killed his supervisor Ward Edwards, 49, before turning the 9mm Glock pistol on himself in a meeting room at the Cummins Seymour Engine Plant where they worked.  The motive was described as a personnel issue, with the Seymour Police Chief noting that the two had a “supervisor/employee relationship.”  Autopsy results showed that Edwards died of multiple gunshot wounds and Chen died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  Chen purchased the Glock handgun used in the shooting from Plainfield Shooting Supply in 2012.

Source: “New details released in Seymour shooting,” whas11.com, March 11, 2016.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: James Lonaker  UNINTENTIONAL

Date: February 21, 2016
Total Killed: 1

Circumstances:
On February 21, 2016, concealed handgun permit holder James Lonaker, 62, was unintentionally shot and killed by his six-year-old son.  Lonaker was in his bedroom changing his clothes, put his .38 revolver down on top of a table, and turned to use his computer.  His son picked up the handgun and pulled the trigger, unintentionally shooting his father in the upper body.  Lonaker died en route to the hospital.  The boy told investigators that he did not think the handgun was loaded and did not intend to hurt his father.

Source: “‘We can tell his heart is broken’:  Ind. 6-year-old picks up dad’s gun and accidentally kills him,” Washington Post, February 23, 2016.

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Michael Hrnciar  SUICIDE

Date: September 5, 2014
Total Killed: 2 (including shooter)
Law Enforcement Officers Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On September 5, 2014, concealed handgun permit holder Michael Hrnciar, 33, shot and killed Merrillville Police Officer Nickolaus Schultz, 24, before turning the handgun on himself. Hrnciar was reportedly evicted from his condominium in July 2014 following a foreclosure. In August 2014, the condo’s property management said they had to change damaged locks at Hrnciar’s unit after discovering they had been tampered with and the unit entered. On September 5, 2014, police were called when Hrnciar’s vehicle was seen parked outside his former home and the previously closed windows of the condo were now open. Police unsuccessfully attempted to get Hrnciar to answer the door before they forced their way into the condo. With no electrical power in the unit, the two officers searched the unit by flashlight. Hrnciar, wearing police-style body armor, ambushed the officers, firing two shots from his .45 handgun. One of the rounds struck Officer Schultz, with the other hitting a wall. Hrnciar then fired a third shot, which drew return gunfire from the second officer. The Lake County Coroner’s Office later determined that Hrnciar died from a single, self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head and was not struck by police gunfire. According to police, Hrnciar moved from Illinois to Indiana in 2006 so that he could legally carry a handgun. Hrnciar had a valid Indiana Handgun Permit issued in 2006, the same year he bought the handgun used in the shooting. Hrnciar also had a fascination with commercial-grade fireworks and evidence indicated that he was illegally manufacturing explosives. He also possessed a half-gallon jar of high-grade processed marijuana and a non-functioning marijuana growing operation.

Source: “Police Release Timeline in Merrillville Officer’s Shooting Death,” abc7chicago.com, September 12, 2014.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Albert Rogers  CONVICTED

Date: June 5, 2014
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On June 5, 2014, concealed handgun permit holder Albert Rogers, 26, shot and killed Josh Tucker, 31, after a week-long dispute about a dog.  According to court documents, Rogers fired as many as 10 shots at Tucker during the argument.  Rogers had also fired at Tucker’s dog a week prior to the fatal shooting.  Rogers was arrested and charged with murder.  Rogers pled guilty to aggravated battery, and in February 2015 was sentenced to 11 years, including 10 years in community corrections and one year of probation.

Source: “Man pleads guilty to aggravated battery in fatal shooting stemming from dog argument,” fox59.com, February 17, 2015.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Jeremy Washington  CONVICTED

Date: March 2014
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
In March 2014, concealed handgun permit holder Jeremy Washington, 36, killed Haley Nellum, 17, in a car crash as he fled from an altercation at the Corner Pocket Pub.  Washington claimed that he was approached by a group of people in the Pub, including Chad Jackson, who were trying to start a fight or provoke him into an altercation.  After the group was kicked out of the bar, another altercation followed in the parking lot.  Washington claimed that shots were fired at him from Jackson’s SUV.  Washington retrieved his Sig Sauer Nightmare .45 pistol from between the seats of his car and fired between one and eight shots, in what he described as an effort to scare the people in the SUV.  One of the bullets pierced Jackson’s neck, wounding him.  Believing that the SUV was following him, Washington fled the scene in his car, running a red light at more than 100 miles per hour and colliding with Haley Nellum’s car.  Her car flipped over multiple times and the driver’s side door was pushed past the center console.  Nellum was killed in the crash.  In September 2015, Washington was found guilty of reckless homicide, causing death when operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, causing serious bodily injury when operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, and criminal recklessness – committed while armed with a deadly weapon.  He faces a maximum of 14 years in prison.

Source: “Washington guilty of reckless homicide, not murder,” wane.com, September 23, 2015; “Shooting victim gives his account in trial,” The Journal Gazette, September 22, 2015.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Jayveon Daniels  CONVICTED

Date: August 26, 2013
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On August 26, 2013, concealed handgun permit holder Jayveon Daniels, 21, and Duane Snelling, 22 met with La’Kice Brooks, 17, inside a car to sell him marijuana.  Brook was carrying his mother’s pink handgun and Daniels was also armed.  According to Snelling’s attorney, Brooks allegedly tried to rob Daniels and Snelling in retaliation for a previous robbery.  During the sale, there was a struggle for Brooks’ gun.  According to a plea agreement, Snelling shot Brooks with Daniels’ gun.  Daniels and Snelling drove off, leaving Brooks in the parking lot.  Brooks died on the way to the hospital.  Daniels pleaded guilty to reckless homicide, and on January 13, 2015 he was sentenced to two years in jail followed by two years in community corrections and two years on probation.

Source: “Cousins sentenced in Highland teen’s homicide,” nwitimes.com, January 14, 2015.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Jay Byler  UNINTENTIONAL

Date: February 25, 2011
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On February 25, 2011, concealed handgun permit holder Jay Byler accidently shot and killed his seven-year-old daughter Karlee when his Norinco pistol fell out of his coat pocket and fired. The shooting occurred at the family’s home after Jay Byler had been playing outside in the snow with Karlee, her 10-year-old sister Brooklyn, and his wife. According to a statement released by the family’s church, “Jay was helping the girls with their boots when the gun fell out of his pocket and discharged. Karlee was killed.” The statement described the first grader as an “ornery angel” and stated that like her dad she loved to clown around. A family friend stated, “She was just infectious. Karlee was just a delight and a joy. People talk about her with words like ‘smiles’ and ‘hugs.’ Karlee was a hugger.” Later analysis found that the gun had a functional defect and no charges were filed in the shooting.

Source: “Prosecutor: Gun that killed Goshen girl had functional defect,” southbendtribune.com, March 16, 2011; “Friends remember ‘ornery angel’ killed in accidental shooting,” Newscenter16, February 27, 2011.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Lucas Holland  CONVICTED

Date: March 25, 2010
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On March 25, 2010, concealed handgun permit holder Lucas Holland, 28, shot and killed David Moore, 52. Holland was allegedly stealing Moore’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) when Moore returned home and confronted him. Holland claimed that he was repossessing the ATV and that he feared Moore was going to harm him when he shot Moore in the back of the head with a .40 Taurus pistol. Holland obtained a concealed handgun permit in July 2009. Holland was arrested and charged with murder when he was found driving a truck with the stolen ATV in the back. In the wake of Moore’s death, local law enforcement agencies reported an increase in the number of people seeking permits to carry a concealed weapon.

UPDATE: On July 1, 2011, Lucas Holland was sentenced to 85 years in prison after pleading guilty to the murder of David Moore. Holland told the court, “I took the life of a good man for absolutely no reason…The remorse I feel is real and will go on forever.”

Source: “Brown county man to serve 85 years for murder,” The Republic, July 1, 2011; “Man accused of Unionville shooting death had handgun permit,” Bloomington Herald-Times, March 31, 2010; “Suspect arrested in murder of Monroe County man,” fox59.com, March 26, 2010; “Deceased man’s property found in local man’s truck,” Brown County Democrat, March 26, 2010.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: William J. Calderon  CONVICTED

Date: August 22, 2009
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On August 22, 2009, concealed handgun permit holder William J. Calderon, 22, supplied the handgun used in a prank that resulted in the shooting death of Landon Siela, 21. According to court testimony, Calderon, Siela, and Calderon’s roommate Cory S. Lynch, 23, spent the day drinking and playing with a neighbor’s Airsoft gun (which uses a burst of air to fire non-lethal plastic pellets). At Calderon’s instigation, he and Lynch decided to play a prank on Siela by using actual firearms—including a .45 Kimber pistol that Calderon kept loaded for protection and a second handgun that Siela had brought with him. The two pointed their guns—Calderon with Siela’s handgun and Lynch with Calderon’s loaded pistol—at Siela. Lynch, who according to Calderon “didn’t know that much about firearms,” pulled the trigger on the Kimber pistol, the bullet striking Siela in the throat, killing him. Calderon pled guilty to pointing a firearm, a misdemeanor, but the judge rejected the plea partly on the grounds that the plea agreement was too lenient. Calderon is also charged with false informing, a misdemeanor. Calderon’s concealed carry permit was revoked following the shooting.

UPDATE: In June 2010 Calderon pleaded guilty to pointing a firearm, a Class A misdemeanor, in the death of Siela. He was sentenced to 120 days on community corrections followed by 245 days on supervised probation.

Source: “Second plea in shooting accepted,” jconline.com, June 12, 2010; “Ex-Purdue student wants new judge for role in shooting case,” jconline.com, March 22, 2010; “Judge just doesn’t buy story in WL shooting,” jconline.com, March 10, 2010.