Man pleads guilty to pointing rifle at Henderson police

A 54-year-old man who may have hoped to be killed by Henderson police, pleaded guilty to one felony count Thursday.

Tony Allen McNeill, who was wounded when he pointed a gun at officers, pleaded guilty to assault with a deadly weapon for the December 2011 incident. McNeill's lawyer, Deputy Public Defender Harmony Letizia, said her client never intended to hurt anyone else.

Since the Dec. 26, 2011, shooting, McNeill has been receiving mental health treatment regularly, Letizia said.

A sentencing hearing was set for March 7, when Letizia will seek probation for McNeill so he can continue mental health treatment.

Judge Valorie Vega could send McNeill to prison for one to six years.

McNeill was originally charged with six felony counts, but one was dismissed after a preliminary hearing, and the other four charges were dropped as part of the plea deal, Letizia said. Prosecutors could not be reached for comment.

McNeill, 54, was reported to be suicidal when he aimed a .22-caliber rifle at three police officers while standing in front of the condominium on Racetrack Road near Boulder Highway in Henderson.

McNeill didn't fire, but police said he pointed the rifle at them before they fired at him.

McNeill suffered a chest wound and was hospitalized for about three weeks.

Before the shooting, McNeill's mother said that he had been despondent after losing a job because of a disabling injury and that he had received mental health treatment for more than two decades. She said her son broke off visits to his mental health care providers in the weeks before the confrontation.

Contact reporter Francis McCabe at fmccabe@review or 702-380-1039.