Stateline man arrested in Kingsbury shooting
Thirty-two-year-old Donald Ray Lawson Jr. of Stateline was arrested for attempted murder Tuesday after an early-morning shooting on Upper Kingsbury Grade.
James McGeehan, 29, was shot at 2:50 a.m. approximately seven times outside his South Benjamin Drive home, Douglas County Sheriff Ron Pierini reported. McGeehan was transported by Care Flight to Washoe Medical Center in Reno and Tuesday afternoon was listed in critical but stable condition at the intensive care unit.
The gunman allegedly was tampering with the victim’s car before the shooting. McGeehan reportedly confronted the man before being shot. Investigators said information on the type and caliber of weapon used would not be released until today.
“I think it would be fair to say that we have a destruction of the victim’s vehicle,” Pierini said. “The tires were slashed and the victim went out to investigate, and that is when he was shot by the suspect.”
Sheriff’s deputies detained Lawson Jr. for several hours before the arrest was made.
A recent history of road rage between McGeehan and Lawson may have led to the incident.
“I have heard that it had been an argument regarding how one has been driving,” Douglas County Sheriff’s Sgt. Lance Modispacher said. “They knew each other well enough to the point where the suspect knew where the victim lived.”
After officers arrived on the crime scene at 2:52 a.m., road blocks were put in place to control traffic moving out of south Upper Kingsbury.
Nevada Department of Corrections personnel sweep the area near South Benjamin Drive looking for evidence Tuesday. Photo by/Dan Thrift
Traffic was blocked on South Benjamin to prevent disruption of the crime scene. Motorists were allowed to leave south Upper Kingsbury through Tramway Drive. Officers stopped cars as late as 11:15 a.m. Tuesday to gather information.
“They asked me what was in the back (of my car) and they said there was an incident about 3 a.m.” said Kingsbury resident Bj Afeman. “They didn’t say anything about a shooting. They asked me for my driver’s license and wrote down my information with a pen and pad. I could see on the pad that he was taking everyone’s (information.)”
Deputies released little information to the motorists. Many Kingsbury residents were unaware what the police presence was for.
“All I know is the little bit that the police told me,” said Kingsbury resident Cliff Hill. “I can’t blame them (for not giving information.) The more they let out the more the guy who did it knows what they know.”
“I have had people calling here all morning trying to figure out what is going on,” said Cricket Justice, manager of the Fox and Hound Bar & Grill. “The Sheriff’s Department said ‘if you see any shady characters give us a call.’ “
Other residents were well aware that something was amiss when they heard the gunshots. The Douglas County Sheriff’s department reported receiving 10 calls in reference to shots being fired on South Benjamin. Deputies were at the scene within minutes.
“I got up to go to the bathroom and I looked down on Kingsbury and saw three cop cars with their lights flashing,” said Kingsbury resident Ron Stowell. “I figured something was going on.”
The lack of information early Tuesday did not bother some Kingsbury residents, despite the tension of the situation.
“The one good thing I have to say is that if this was L.A. they wouldn’t even be on it, but our cops are right there,” Justice said.
The Sheriff’s Office was pleased to have a suspect detained.
“We’re glad we rounded this guy up, because it sent a panic through the community,” Modispacher said. “People sending their kids to school and there is a murderer running loose.”
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After a period of dry, warm weather, winter returns this week to Lake Tahoe.