Va. man charged with shooting friend

November 23, 2006|by DAVE McMILLION

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - A Berryville, Va., man told police that a friend accidentally shot himself with a .45-caliber handgun behind a house in Rippon, W.Va., Tuesday night, but then told police that he had lied and he was the one who shot the man, according to court records.

Stephen Donald Lilly, who told police that he drank about eight beers, had retrieved the gun to show to his friends and accidentally shot Brian Lee Gorman, 19, in the stomach area, Jefferson County Magistrate Court records said.

Lilly, 20, of 1410 Triple J Road, was arrested and charged with wanton endangerment, court records said.

Lilly is free on a $10,000 personal recognizance bond.

Gorman was flown to Winchester (Va.) Medical Center for treatment of nonlife-threatening injuries, police said.

The county's 911 center received a call about 10:52 p.m. Tuesday from Lilly, who said that Gorman had shot himself, Cpl. D.C. Tabler of the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department said in a criminal complaint.


Tabler said he responded to the house at 2083 Berryville Pike and saw Gorman, address unknown, sitting in a chair in front of the house with a gunshot wound to his stomach area. Three other males including Lilly were around Gorman, Tabler said.

Lilly stated that Gorman shot himself, although no one knew where the gun was, Tabler said in his complaint.

After Gorman was flown to Winchester Medical Center, Tabler said he started talking to Lilly, who stated he lied to a dispatcher and Tabler about the incident, according to the criminal complaint.

Lilly said he and Gorman and two other individuals were sitting in a shed behind the house when Lilly brought his .45-caliber handgun into the shed to show his friends, according to Tabler. Lilly pulled the gun's trigger and the gun fired once, striking Gorman, Tabler said.

Gorman ran out of the shed and sat in a chair in front of the house, Tabler said. One of the other individuals who was in the shed said Lilly gave him the gun and told him to hide it, Tabler said.

The gun was buried in some dirt behind the shed and covered with leaves, Tabler said.

Lilly later told police that he drank about eight beers and that he accidentally shot Gorman, Tabler said.

Conviction on wanton endangerment carries a possible punishment of one to five years in jail or imprisonment of up to a year and/or a fine of $250 to $2,500.

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