BENNINGTON — The Shaftsbury man police say threatened three others by shooting a gun into the sky and ground will be confined at home 24-hours-a-day until the court can assess the evidence in the case, which appears to be a drug deal gone bad.
In Bennington Superior Court on Tuesday, Gerardo Zelayagranados, 31, was arraigned on four counts, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and three counts of reckless endangerment, in last Friday’s incident at his residence on Ehrich Road in Shaftsbury.
Zelayagranados sat silently sobbing next to his lawyer throughout the proceeding. A Spanish interpreter was ordered, which delayed the hearing for several hours.
According to a court affidavit, police were dispatched to the residence Friday after learning that two people were trying to hide in a neighbor’s garage after being threatened.
Police learned the incident started when both people came to the residence from Schenectady, N.Y., to purchase a PlayStation 5 through Facebook Marketplace. After they arrived, Zelayagranados allegedly got agitated and frustrated and started shooting rounds from a 30-30 rifle and a handgun. A third person involved was later found by police. The affidavit also states that those three people gave false names to police, and that they were there at the residence to sell marijuana.
Police surrounded the residence for several hours as they waited for Zelayagranados to come out. After an investigation, it was later determined that the shots were not fired at any of the individuals, but at the ground and in the air. Police decided not to escalate the situation and left, arresting Zelayagranados the next day.
In the original statement by the Vermont State Police, it mentioned that Zelayagranados was intoxicated during the incident. Police affidavits do not mention any intoxication, either from drugs or alcohol.
Zelayagranados faces up to eight years behind bars if convicted on all counts. Bennington Judge Kerry McDonald-Cary released Zelayagranados on a 24-hour home curfew, pending a weight of evidence hearing.