News and Press Releases

Naschitti, N.M., Man Pleads Guilty To Federal Firearm Charge Related To A Shooting At The Gallup Indian Medical Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 16, 2013

ALBUQUERQUE – Nathan Madison Coleman, 19, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Naschitti, N.M., pleaded guilty this morning to discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence under a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The offense to which Coleman entered his guilty plea requires that Coleman be sentenced to at least ten years in prison.

Coleman was arrested on Jan. 22, 2013 based on a five-count indictment charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury; assault with a dangerous weapon; using a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence; and two counts of possession of a stolen firearm. According to the indictment, on March 12, 2012, Coleman assaulted a man by shooting him with a firearm and caused the victim serious bodily injury. It also alleges that Coleman stole two firearms on Feb. 28, 2012.

During this morning’s proceedings, Coleman pled guilty to Count 3 of the indictment, charging him with using and carrying a firearm in relation to a crime of violence. In entering his guilty plea, Coleman admitted shooting the victim, a 25-year-old Navajo man, in the parking lot of the Gallup Indian Medical Center at 8:00 p.m. on March 12, 2012. Coleman shot the victim because he believed that the victim was disrespectful of his family when they exchanged “words” in the lobby of the Gallup Indian Medical Center. Coleman also admitted using a stolen firearm to shoot the victim.

Coleman has been in federal custody since his arrest and remains detained pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled. Under the terms of the plea agreement, the remaining four counts of the indictment will be dismissed after Coleman is sentenced.

This case was investigated by the Gallup office of the FBI and the Gallup Police Department, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul H. Spiers.

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