Rifle man accused of attempted murder

Jamie Babcock

A Rifle man was arrested Saturday for attempted murder after he allegedly shot at an acquaintance Jan. 26.

Jamie Babcock faces an attempted first-degree murder charge for allegedly trying to shoot a friend. Babcock also faces a charge of possessing a weapon as a previous offender, a class 5 felony.

In his first court appearance in the case Monday, Magistrate Susan Ryan set bond at $100,000.

According to an arrest warrant, Babcock first called Rifle Police and said that a gun went off three times during a struggle inside his truck.

Babcock did not identify the alleged assailant, but told police the fight started with a different person at a camper parked in a lot near Railroad Avenue in Rifle, according to the affidavit.

Babcock said he was in the truck as he struggled with the other person, but a later investigation could not find any bullet damage in the truck.

Police spoke with a friend of Babcock’s who claimed to have struggled with Babcock, took his gun away, and later tried to take him home because he had been drinking.

Before getting into the car, Babcock allegedly said he wanted his gun back, and the friend returned it, unloaded, according to a statement from the friend.

Babcock reloaded it, and when he got to the passenger seat, he fired several shots at the friend, which missed, according to the friend’s statement.

The friend and his brother got the gun away from Babcock, who left on foot, according to the two men’s statements to police.

Someone at the scene captured the fight on video, according to the affidavit, but police had not seen it at the time the arrest warrant was signed Jan. 30.

Police found two shell casings at the scene, which matched two unfired rounds Babcock had in his possession, according to the warrant.

In the truck Babcock’s friend was driving, police found a handgun on Jan. 28 with an empty magazine and chamber, with the hammer pulled back and the safety off, according to the warrant.

According to the warrant, the detective doubted that someone actively struggling with such a weapon would be able to fire more than one shot. The semiautomatic gun has a slide that ejects spent casings, which needs to move freely to fire.

The detective also doubted that a gun fired inside the cab would have ejected the two casings outside the cab.

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