(BEDFORD) – A Heltonville man was sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon last week.
Lawrence County arrested 21-year-old Wyatt Blackwell in March 2018 after he shot and injured Ben Ooley.
Blackwell, who was represented by Sam Shapiro, pleaded guilty after a negotiated plea agreement.
According to court records, Blackwell agreed to plead guilty to criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon. Charges of aggravated battery used when results in loss or impairment of a bodily function, battery by means of a deadly weapon and two counts of criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon were dismissed.
Lawrence County Superior Court Judge John Plummer III sentenced Blackwell to 545 days in jail with credit for one day served. The 543 days were suspended. Blackwell was placed on supervised probation for 365 days. If Blackwell violates his probation, he can be jailed for up to 543 days.
On Sunday, March 11, the incident began at 4:57 p.m. at a home at 5476 State Road 58 East.
Police received a 911 call reported shots fired and one person was injured. An off-duty officer was in the area and arrived on the scene within minutes.
Sheriff Branham says then 36-year-old Ben Ooley suffered a gunshot to his hip. He was taken to IU Health Bloomington Hospital for treatment.
Police say Ooley was at a home located on State Road 58 helping a woman’s 9-year-old daughter round up some horses that got loose when Blackwell came on the scene riding a Polaris ATV yelling “I am going to blow someone’s head off” and shot the horses. He then fired several shots with one striking Ooley.
Blackwell then fled the scene.
Deputies set up a perimeter and began searching for Blackwell. Four conservation officers assisted in the search while Indiana State Police troopers and Mitchell Police officers assisted handling calls for the county.
Dispatchers were able to ping Blackwell’s cell phone and found him in the area of Blackwell’s farm and business on Hunter’s Creek Road and State Road 446.
Blackwell’s father contacted his son on the cellphone and talked him into giving himself up.
Blackwell had driven the ATV up into the forest to a cabin owned by the family. He then drove to the family farm and surrendered. Police searched the cabin and found numerous weapons, shell casings and body armor.