• Alleged Manchester self-shooter held without bail
    February 02,2013
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    BENNINGTON — A man who allegedly shot himself with a .22-caliber handgun Dec. 31 in Manchester was ordered held without bail Friday and he is expected to be charged in connection with the shooting.

    Donald J. Ely-Gardner, of Manchester, was arraigned Monday on two felony charges of first-degree aggravated domestic assault, two felony charges of second-degree aggravated domestic assault, which were modified for a previous conviction for violating an abuse prevention order, and a misdemeanor charge for violating the conditions of his release from custody.

    The charges were filed after police said a woman had reported to them Monday that Ely-Gardner had broken her ankle in June and her finger Dec. 14.

    The night before Ely-Gardner was expected to be arraigned on the assault charges, he reported to police that he had been shot in a “drive-by shooting.” However, after an investigation, police determined he had shot himself in the chest.

    On Monday, Bennington County State’s Attorney Erica Marthage said the gun was later recovered from Ely-Gardner’s mother.

    Marthage said Friday she has filed a misdemeanor charge of providing false information to the police in connection with the incident.

    While arguing that Ely-Gardner should be held without bail, Marthage said he presented a danger because he had a loaded gun in Manchester and demonstrated he was willing to use it.

    Ely-Gardner pleaded innocent Monday to the charges. He also has pending felony charges of violating an abuse prevention order.
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