Friends of shooting victim fear for their safety
The friends of a woman who was allegedly shot by an ex-boyfriend as she drove to work have asked a judge to help protect them.
The victim, who was not identified by authorities, had an active restraining order against Christopher Lyle Fields, 27, when he allegedly shot her Jan. 9 near Interstate 25 and County Line Road. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office said Fields stood in front of the victim’s vehicle and fired one shot through the windshield, striking her. She is expected to make a full recovery.
Fields’ pre-trial bond from an earlier stalking case in which the shooting victim was targeted was revoked because of the attempted homicide charge. But prosecutors say the victim’s friends are concerned for their safety because of Fields’ recent violent behavior. During a motions hearing Jan. 22, Douglas County District Court Judge Paul King granted their request to block the defendant’s access to their addresses.
Police say Fields was wearing an ankle monitor when he shot his ex-girlfriend and removed it shortly thereafter before fleeing on a motorcycle. Six hours after the shooting, he was caught in Raton, N.M., where he is awaiting extradition.
The protective order will remove the victim’s friends’ personal information, but Fields’ attorney, Christopher Leroi, pointed out that his client already received court documents from the previous stalking case that list the victim’s friends as witnesses. The documents include their addresses.
“If the horse is out of the barn, it’s hard to get it back into the barn,” King said.
Fields was originally scheduled to appear at the Jan. 22 motions hearing for the stalking case. He was expected to be extradited to Colorado by Jan. 25, and Leroi said he assumes his client will be in police custody, precluding the need to worry about possible retaliation.
King rescheduled the motions hearing to 8:15 a.m. Feb. 12 to determine whether there will be a need to delay his stalking trial. Fields’ right to a speedy trial was vacated because of his “voluntary” absence from the hearing stemming from his departure from Colorado, which violated his pre-trial release conditions. The victim also is still recuperating and might need more time before the trial.
Before the Jan. 22 hearing adjourned, King informed Leroi and the prosecutors that Fields’ mother was recently charged with a misdemeanor after leaving a message on King’s voicemail. He said investigators from the sheriff’s office and the 18th Judicial District took the message for evidentiary purposes. It is unclear what charge was filed against her.