DNA leads detectives to N. Spokane shooting suspect




Posted on November 26, 2013 at 12:57 PM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 26 at 7:02 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. -- Spokane Police have asked the County Prosecutor’s Office to charge a man for a 2012 shooting at the Hill’n Dale apartment complex in North Spokane .

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SPD was seeking charges of 1st Degree Assault, 1st Degree Burglary and Conspiracy to Commit 1st Degree Burglary for Christopher D. Sheldon, 36.

Police believe Sheldon and possibly two other men broke into an apartment through the sliding glass door near Colton and Magnesium on Oct. 19, 2012.   A man living at the apartment grabbed his own firearm and confronted the suspect.  Shots were exchanged between the two and Sheldon fled on foot, according to authorities.  When police arrived, they found the victim, 56, with a gunshot wound in the chest.  The victim survived, however.

“This was a true home invasion robbery. These people kicked in the door. They shot at the homeowner. He was hit,” said Lieutenant Mark Griffiths with the Spokane Police Department.

The victim is a Department of Corrections employee. His teenage sons were also home and in the line of fire.

WATCH: N. Spokane shooting victim employed by a work release program

Sheldon is currently in jail in Aberdeen, Washington and was scheduled to be transported back to Spokane in the coming week.

Detectives described the attack as cold and calculated.

“The victim did not know the suspect directly, no,” said Griffiths.

They said robbery was likely the motive.
Detectives followed up on several leads over the course of one year. Many of those leads went no where but they never gave up hope.    

In early November, DNA found on an item at the scene matched Sheldon.

“They don’t go cold, they don't get filed away. We continue to collect evidence, resubmit evidence, and keep working the cases. In this case it worked out,” said Griffiths.

Sheldon’s criminal record already includes possession of a stolen car, robbery and theft.