Suspect charged in Saturday shooting, in which two people were injured

Monday, January 13, 2014 | 6:40 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — Damerian Cheatum, the 17-year-old suspect in the shooting near Downtown Optimist Park that injured two people Saturday, has been charged with two counts of first-degree assault, one count of armed criminal action and one count of unlawful use of a weapon.

According to the probable cause statement, one of the victims, Daravion T. Fajardo, told police that both victims were talking with Cheatum and two other witnesses Saturday afternoon. The conversation, for unknown reasons, became a confrontation, and Cheatum pulled a gun. Police recovered 10 shell casings at the scene, near a house at Forest and Grand.

Both victims, Fajardo, 19, and Cristopher D. Huddleston, 21, ran away and a stray bullet hit each in the lower back. The victims and witnesses told police Huddleston was Cheatum's intended target.

Both victims were taken to the hospital with serious injuries.

Police were dispatched around 2 p.m., and Cheatum was arrested during a traffic stop around midnight Saturday. There was an existing warrant for Cheatum's arrest in a domestic assault case, with a $1,000 bond.

Cheatum's bail was set at $200,000 cash-only bond. The defendant is not allowed to possess a firearm or make contact with the victims or witnesses from the incident, according to his docket entry.

Columbia police ask anyone with information about this incident to call the department at 442-6131 or Crime Stoppers at 875-8477 to remain anonymous.

Supervising editor is Stephanie Ebbs.

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