Jefferson City residents hurt in I-70 crash

A Jefferson City man was placed on five years supervised probation after pleading guilty to a charge in connection with a shooting in February.

During a hearing before Cole County Presiding Judge Jon Beetem, Paul McElrath Jr., 22, pleaded guilty to unlawful use of a weapon. He was placed on five years of supervised probation. If he fails to meet the conditions of his probation during that five years, he faces a prison sentence of 15 years.

Another man charged with unlawful use of a weapon in the case, Markevious Fuller, 19, of Memphis, Tennessee, is scheduled to be in Cole County Judge Dan Green’s court in July.

Jefferson City Police Department officers responded to the McDonald’s restaurant on Missouri Boulevard for multiple reports of shots being fired, according to police reports. The 911 Communications center began receiving calls that several people were firing weapons in the parking lot.

One of the callers advised someone had been shot but would not provide any further information.

Callers began giving descriptions of vehicles leaving the area amid the gunfire. Officers located 13 spent casings and broken glass on the lot, but no victims were located.

The 911 Center later received a call reporting damage to a vehicle on the Lincoln University campus. LU police located a vehicle with bullet holes.

Jefferson City police responded and identified a suspect, Fuller, who was eventually taken into custody.

McElrath was identified as the second shooter, and authorities contacted him by phone. McElrath had driven to St. Louis after the shooting, but he agreed to return for an interview. Police said he admitted to his involvement and said he had been struck in the back by one round of ammunition. An inspection of his vehicle indicated a round had traveled through the trunk, backseat and through the driver’s seat, striking McElrath in the back. The injury was not life-threatening and required no professional medical attention, police said.

McElrath told police he went to McDonald’s to fight with another individual, according to court records. McElrath said he exited his vehicle with a gun in his hand and asked the other individual if they were going to shoot or fight. McElrath said he fired two 9mm rounds at the other subject and struck a vehicle. Police said McElrath told them his car was hit with gunfire as he drove away, including a slug that struck him in the back. He said he disposed of his gun when he got to St. Louis.

Fuller reportedly told authorities an individual had fired a shot in his direction and that’s when he got out of his car and fired at the other subject. Fuller allegedly said he fired until his gun was empty. Authorities said he fired 11 rounds of 9mm ammunition. Fuller allegedly drove to Taylor Street and hid his gun in some woods; it was recovered by police.

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