Steamboat man given 60 days jail for firing bullet through neighbor’s wall
January 14, 2015
Steamboat Springs — A 23-year-old Steamboat Springs man was sentenced to 60 days in Routt County Jail Tuesday for firing a bullet through his neighbor’s wall while intoxicated.
Michael Amendt originally was charged with felony illegal discharge of a firearm, criminal mischief and two counts of prohibited use of a weapon.
As part of a plea deal, Amendt pleaded guilty to a single count of prohibited use of a weapon, a Class 2 misdemeanor.
Also as part of the plea deal, a second criminal mischief case against Amendt was dismissed.
Amendt was arrested on New Year’s Eve after police suspected he tore down Christmas lights at The Western Lodge.
District Attorney Brett Barkey released a statement after the sentencing.
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"The right to bear arms includes a responsibility to do so safely,” Barkey said. “The reckless disregard of those responsibilities creates a grave risk to the community and will result in significant consequences — including jail — even if by grace alone noone is injured."
The shooting occurred Sept. 20 in Amendt’s roommate’s bedroom at the Eaglepointe Townhomes off Hilltop Parkway.
One of Amendt’s neighbors on that date heard a loud pop that sounded like a gunshot at about midnight. A few days later, the neighbor discovered what appeared to be bullet holes in the wall and ceiling of his downstairs guest bedroom and called police.
Police eventually pulled a .45-caliber bullet out of the ceiling.
Amendt told police he was celebrating his birthday and “may have drunk more than he usually does.”
Routt County Judge James Garrecht handed down the sentence.
In addition to jail, Amendt will be on unsupervised probation but can request a reduction after three years. He will not be allowed to possess firearms or drink alcohol and will have to pay $919.50 in fines and costs.