Bethalto Man Charged With 3 Counts Of Aggravated Discharge Of A Firearm
BETHALTO - A Bethalto man was charged today in Madison County Circuit Court with three counts of Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm and one count of Aggravated Battery With a Firearm. The man is Thomas A. Bowers, 67, of the 700 block of South Moreland in the Kickapoo Village Trailer Park in Bethalto.
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Bethalto Police Chief Mike Dixon said charges stem from the police response and investigation into two separate 911 calls received at 12 p.m. on August 31, 2022, reporting a man shooting a gun inside Kickapoo Village Trailer Park, 750 South Moreland Road, Bethalto.
"The first caller reported her neighbor had just shot a gun into her home, which was also occupied by her 10-old-daughter and fiancé," the chief said. "The second 911 caller was a family member of the manager of Kickapoo Village who reported the manager had been shot while mowing grass in the park.
"Officers from the Bethalto Police Department, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, as well as the East Alton, Wood River, and South Roxanna Police Departments responded to the scene. Officers quickly secured the scene allowing for the victim to be treated and transported by Alton Memorial Ambulance and Bethalto Volunteer Fire Department Officials.
"After securing a perimeter and evacuating the victim, law enforcement initiated telephone contact with the suspect, who had reportedly retreated into his residence at lot 55 of Kickapoo Village. After approximately 20 minutes of telephone communications with law enforcement, the suspect exited his trailer, with a firearm, which he placed on his porch railing and stepped away from. The subject was taken into custody without further incident and identified as Thomas Bowers."
Dixon continued and said Bowers was ultimately transported to the Madison County Jail, where he was held pending today’s warrant application. He remains in the custody of the Madison County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond, which was set by the Honorable Judge Ronald Slemer.
"It appears that past interactions and contacts between the park manager and Bowers likely played some part in motivating the shooting," the chief said. "Witnesses report that multiple rounds were fired during the event, with rounds striking a neighboring home, an air conditioning unit, and a neighbor's vehicle. The park manager was struck by one of the fired rounds. He was transported to a St. Louis area hospital where he was treated for his injuries. He has since been released and is expected to physically recover from the injuries." Click for related story.
Chief Dixon said he would like to take this time to personally thank all the first responders and communications officials that were involved in this incident and the subsequent investigation.
"We are truly fortunate as a region to have such dedicated and professional first responders, who are ever willing to put their own safety aside to respond to the aid of community members in need, as well as their fellow first responders," he said.
As always it is important to remember that the issuance of charges in this incident is based solely on probable cause and is not indicative of guilt. Mr. Bowers is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law of all the charges filed.
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