At a preliminary hearing Thursday, an El Dorado Superior Court judge upheld a criminal complaint for Angelo Fitzgerald Anderson to face felony charges of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and shooting at an occupied vehicle.
South Lake Tahoe Police arrested Anderson, 22, on Feb. 19. He remains in custody on $500,000 bail.
Anderson allegedly fired a 9 millimeter pistol three times at former coworker Dennis McQuitty’s pickup truck as McQuitty was driving away from the A & A Lake Tahoe Inn where Anderson was living and the two men encountered each other.
One of the bullets hit McQuitty’s truck. It passed through the tailgate and bed and dented the cab, according to police statements at the daylong court hearing.
“Counts two and three, I think that’s a given,” Judge Kenneth Melikian said about probable cause for Anderson to face charges of assault with a firearm and shooting at an occupied vehicle.
Melikian also found probable cause for Anderson to answer to the attempted murder charge. That was approved over objection of Anderson’s public defender, Bridget Matos. Matos argued Anderson intended only to shoot out the truck’s tires with no intent to kill or harm McQuitty. She further argued Anderson had cause to fear McQuitty.
Prosecutors argued Anderson left his apartment to confront McQuitty, returned inside to get his pistol, then came back out and fired at McQuitty as he was driving out of the parking lot and down Fawn Way and as much as 50 yards away.
“You don’t aim a gun and fire without intent. But for the grace of god, a bullet didn’t pierce the cab and kill Dennis McQuitty,” Deputy District Attorney Jamie Verwayen said.
Police said they found the unloaded 9 millimeter pistol in a backpack worn by Anderson’s girlfriend, Leslie Monroy. She has not been charged in connection with the incident.
After Anderson was detained because he matched a witness description, Anderson told police where to find the loaded magazine, which he hid in a mayonnaise jar in his refrigerator.
Anderson and Monroy are from Los Angeles. They moved to South Lake Tahoe to work for a cleaning company that services several area casinos and also provided their housing at the A & A Lake Tahoe Inn.
The couple worked with McQuitty for several days. According to court testimony, McQuitty told his job supervisors that Anderson and his girlfriend were drinking at work, after which they were fired.
McQuitty, who also was fired by the company, told Judge Melikian he was at the hotel to visit a friend who lived there. He parked his truck in front of Anderson’s apartment.
Testimony differed about the actual exchange between McQuitty and Anderson. Monroy testified the two men yelled at each other and exchanged expletives after Anderson asked McQuitty why he lied and got the couple fired. McQuitty testified he only told Anderson, “You made your bed, now lay in it,” before getting in his truck and leaving.
Anderson’s next court date is April 21, when he will be arraigned and trial dates will be set.