Ex-deputy sentenced to 'community service' after shooting up residence

Kevin Blocker - Staff writer
The Spokesman-Review

Saturday, June 8, 2002

A judge on Friday sentenced a former Stevens County sheriff's reserve deputy to community service after he pleaded guilty to his role in the firing of a machine gun in a residential area.

Also, another man with former deputy Brian Cravens, Christopher Spurlock, resigned on Friday from his job with the state Department of Corrections.

Cravens is one of two former sheriff's deputies accused of shooting two homes in Suncrest with a machine gun. Cravens, 24, and Will Clark, 29, were both fired after the April 16 incident.

"He feels very sorry for the stress and strain this has caused the people whose home was invaded by gunfire," Craven's attorney, Bevan Maxey, said after the sentencing in Stevens County Superior Court.

Judge Larry Kristianson fined Cravens $1,000 and sentenced him to 120 hours of community service after he pleaded guilty to discharging a firearm. Prosecutors originally charged him with illegal possession of a machine gun and reckless endangerment.

Meanwhile, Spurlock "voluntarily" submitted his resignation to the DOC, according to James Key, the agency's public information officer.

Key said the DOC had not completed its administrative investigation into Spurlock's conduct. He did not know why Spurlock submitted his resignation.

Clark and Spurlock both were charged with illegal possession of a machine gun and with obstructing law enforcement officers. Clark was also charged with reckless endangerment for allegedly firing one of several machine gun bursts that sent 9mm bullets into two neighbors' homes and through a pickup canopy.

One bullet pierced two walls and lodged in a stack of books five feet from a sleeping man, but no one was injured.

Clark and Spurlock have pleaded innocent and are awaiting trial in Superior Court.

Cravens' brother, Jeffrey Cravens, 22, has been charged with illegal possession of a machine gun and reckless endangerment.

He lives in Utah, and is scheduled to appear in court July 25.

Deputy Prosecutor David Bruneau alleged in court documents that Clark and the Cravens brothers fired several bursts from an Austrian-made Steyr submachine gun with a 30-round magazine. Alcohol apparently was a factor in the 2:20 a.m. shooting from the deck at the back of Clark's and Spurlock's rental home, Bruneau said.

The deputy prosecutor alleges Clark and Spurlock attempted to cover up the crime by trying to mislead investigators.

Bruneau says the suspects claimed they had been trying to locate the source of the shooting, which they said didn't appear to have been from an automatic weapon, as neighbors reported.

Even after ballistics experts traced the shots to Clark's and Spurlock's deck, Spurlock allegedly tried to persuade investigators the shots came from a legal semiautomatic weapon.

Spurlock is not accused of firing any shots himself.

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment for non-profit research and educational purposes only. [Ref. http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml]