The Las Vegas man shot this week by a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper during an escape attempt in the trooper’s squad car was discharged from the hospital Wednesday.
James Stonebraker was hit once in the chest Monday after his drunken driving arrest. Trooper Dean Reynolds, 28, told investigators he stopped the man after noticing him passing back and forth over the yellow traffic line on U.S. Highway 95 near Searchlight, about 60 miles south of Las Vegas.
After Stonebraker, 33, failed a field sobriety test, he was handcuffed and placed in the passenger side of the patrol car. A seat belt was fastened on him.
As Reynolds went back to take an inventory of Stonebraker’s truck before it was towed, he turned to see the man in the driver’s seat of the patrol car.
The suspect, using his teeth, placed the gear shift in reverse and the car started backing up into the road as oncoming traffic approached, said trooper Steve Harney, a patrol spokesman.
Reynolds, a three-year veteran of the patrol, fired one shot from his .40-caliber Smith and Wesson semiautomatic handgun through the windshield, striking Stonebraker in the chest. The car spun around to the other side of the roadway and no one else was injured.
Stonebraker was taken to University Medical Center by helicopter ambulance.
Harney said Stonebraker will be charged with felony drunken driving, attempted escape, resisting instructions of a peace officer, unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, driving with a revoked license and driving an unregistered vehicle.
He will be re-arrested when the district attorney’s office officially files charges.