An Alsea man who was shot by his girlfriend early Saturday morning was arraigned Tuesday on charges of two counts of unlawful use of a weapon, fourth-degree assault, strangulation and two counts of menacing at the Benton County Courthouse on Monday.
Joseph Michael Pellett, 25, was arrested about 9:30 a.m. Monday at 28014 Vernon Road in Alsea, the residence that he shares with his girlfriend, Kaila Courtain, 22. He remained at the Benton County jail Tuesday on $100,000 bail.
According to a probable-cause affidavit submitted Tuesday by the Benton County District Attorney's Office, Pellett and Courtain had been home drinking between 8 and 11 p.m. Friday night and began fighting about midnight. Pellett reportedly strangled her, pulled her hair and hit her in the head several times, leaving visible bruises on her neck, arms and legs and wounds on her back.
Pellett and Courtain began struggling over a .22-caliber automatic handgun. When Courtain gained control of the weapon, she held it to Pellett's temple, and Pellett told her to shoot him. Pellett then stepped back, and Courtain reportedly shot him through the cheek.
After Courtain shot Pellett, the couple and their roommate, Brandon Thurman, drove to a neighbor's house about half a mile away to seek medical help. The neighbor called 911.
Pellett was taken by REACH helicopter to Sacred Heart Medical Center RiverBend in Springfield, and was treated for the bullet wound and released Sunday.
The affidavit also reported a statement from Courtain explaining that Pellett had fired a handgun in her direction in their home about two weeks before June 11. Courtain reportedly was standing in a bedroom, and Pellett shot the handgun at the base of the door, sending bullets into the room, and also hit a hole in the door with the handgun and pointed the handgun at Courtain.
Courtain reportedly told sheriff's investigators after the shooting that she shot Pellett early Saturday out of self-defense.