December 8, 2021

Police: Man faces charges in pellet gun attack

A Cortland man has been charged with shooting a nursing home employee in the face with a pellet gun Friday.

Shawn Fagan, 52, of 33 Kellogg Road, was free today without bail following the incident about 8:10 p.m. Friday, charged with second-degree assault, a felony, and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, a misdemeanor, Cortland police said.

The victim, a 43-year-old employee of Crown Center on Kellogg Road, had stepped outside the nursing home and was standing near the road, looking at her cell phone when she heard a loud pop and felt pain and a metallic taste in her mouth, police said, followed by blood coming from her mouth.

She looked up to see a man, later identified as Fagan, entering his nearby home.

Police said the attack left the victim with a hole in her lower lip, two lost teeth and a loosened tooth. She was treated at the scene by medics from TLC Emergency Medical Services ambulance. City police Lt. Michael Strangeway said this morning that the woman was taken to Upstate University hospital in Syracuse, where she had to have a surgical procedure to remove the pellet from her jaw and will need to either have an implant or partial plate put in to replace her teeth.

Police interviewed Fagan, who refused to cooperate and shouted at his mother, with whom he lives, “Don’t tell them anything,” police said. He denied the residence had pellet guns or other weapons.

Police acquired a search warrant and found two 12-gauge shotguns, one of which was loaded, in Fagan’s room. They also found a high-powered pellet rifle wrapped in aluminum foil, police said.

Fagan had previously told police he believes Crown Center is a front, and houses illegal immigrants inside, police said, and told police Friday that Crown Center is full of criminals. Fagan was arraigned in Cortland City Court and released pending an appearance Jan. 22 in city court.

Cortland County District Attorney Patrick Perfetti said Fagan wasn’t held in the jail on bail because of the new bail reform laws, which took effect Jan. 1 and make misdemeanor crimes, some non-violent felonies and some violent felonies bail ineligible. Although second-degree assault is a violent felony, Perfetti said, “not all subdivisions of that statute qualify for bail.”