Hearing set in dart attacks
May 10, 2014
A June 23 hearing has been set for cousins accused of using a blowgun to dart Gardnerville Ranchos residents.
The 16-and-17-year-old boys appeared in Douglas County District Court on Tuesday before District Judge Tod Young.
The younger boy's attorney, Derrick Lopez, said the boy was willing to admit that he wielded the blowgun, but questioned whether it qualified as a deadly weapon.
Young said he too was interested in finding out whether it met the criteria for a deadly weapon.
Lopez said the dart was essentially a nail with a cap on it and was 4 inches long, so it could hurt someone badly if it was sufficiently propelled.
"The one issue is whether it constitutes a deadly weapon," Young said. "It is propelled by mouth, and there's no allegation that it was poison tipped."
Lopez said that the dart did break someone's skin.
"One did stick into a person," he said. "The dart itself could potentially qualify."
Prosecutor Zack Wadle said he was trying the case as a battery with a deadly weapon.
Young set a fact-finding hearing to determine whether the dart would qualify as a deadly weapon.
The older boy denied all the charges, which will be tried on June 23. Both boys face charges of battery with a deadly weapon and breaching the peace. The younger boy also faces a probation violation.
The boys were arrested on April 28 after a Ritter Drive resident reported being hit by a dart while working in her yard.
Deputies learned that there were reports of attacks dating back to April 22 on Ritter and Kimmerling Way.