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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news October 6, 2015

5/2/2013 1:43:00 PM
Domestic violence, gunfire alleged at Fossil Creek
Joshua Stratford
Joshua Stratford

Yavapai County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched to Fossil Creek area campgrounds Saturday evening for a family fight.

While driving the long road to the campground deputies were stopped by a car carrying the victim, her son, and two others who were getting away from the incident scene.

The woman said that her son's father, 28-year-old Joshua Stratford of Prescott Valley, hurt her in front of their 7-year-old son.

She said Joshua picked her up and threw her to the ground where she struck her head on a rock and lost consciousness briefly.

Another family member tried to break up the fight, but Joshua showed a handgun and began shooting in their direction, according to the woman. The group was able to get to her vehicle and leave.

Deputies, using GPS coordinates from the 911 call, found the campsite near Childs Power Road and approached the only tent, where they found Stratford sleeping inside.

Stratford was arrested and denied that he had a handgun, claiming he put the weapon in the woman's vehicle before she fled.

The victim already had told deputies she saw Joshua toss the gun into the woods. A search of the campsite and surrounding wilderness for the gun was not immediately successful.

Stratford was booked into the Camp Verde jail, charged with domestic violence assault, three counts of endangerment, having a gun that is not permitted and disorderly conduct. He has since been released on his own recognizance.

The following day, an off-duty deputy was camping in the area and in the daylight, located the handgun allegedly used by this suspect.

Taylor Waste

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

Mr. Bassett, given the lack of impartial witnesses, the lack of medical attention for the victim, and the lack of a prior arrest record in this report, readers can guess anything they please.

Posted: Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Article comment by: Danny Smith

@ Marietta
We do have lots of gun regulations and we do have background checks. He was probably charged because he is a prohibited possessor(just guessing). This is a prime example of how bad guys ignore the laws, now matter how many the government can come up with. If the courts would actually uphold the laws we have and not treat these types of cases lightly it would be a good start.

Posted: Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

Hey Itsy Bitsy, I was only explaining to the illiterate that this particular news item meant something other than what he thought it meant. Even at that I was speculating about the case. I indicated that by saying "I suspect", "I believe" and " I don't know". I was just guessing.
Was I guessing wrong?

Posted: Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Article comment by: Maybe I missed something

If he ever had a previous conviction or a restraining order, he would not be permitted to have a gun.

Posted: Monday, May 6, 2013
Article comment by: Mary Heartman

@ dale RUFF
That's not the way laws work in this country. The police can't just make up a statute and apply it after the fact.

As for releasing this man, maybe his side of the story was at least as reasonable as his wife's, and maybe someone at the Sheriff's Station happens to know he's not a danger to anyone, including his wife, when sober.

Posted: Monday, May 6, 2013
Article comment by: Marietta Thompson

It seems most commentors miss the least the ones who are gun supporters ! Their ONLY concern seems to be that there is no gun registry in AZ so why is it different in this case. WELL, I do believe the situation that he was arrested for was because he physically assaulted the mother of his children IN FRONT OF THEM ( felony assault!) and then he was SHOOTING IT IN THEIR DIRECTION, (attempted murder!!!) My biggest concern was WHY was he released? ( how frightened for those children). And to those who's only concern was for your gun owner rights, "When will the rights of others, not to be threatened with a weapon in the hands of a violent, crazy. in-humane, or unstable person become more important than your total unrestricted gun rights?" NO ONE IS TRYING TO TAKE YOUR GUNS AWAY UNLESS YOU HAVE A CRIMINAL HISTORY OR ARE MENTALLY UNSTABLE! We want gun REGULATIONS & Background checks! This is NOT unreasonable unless you are personally effected because you have a criminal background or you are mentally unstable...and that's how those of us with good common sense look at all you gun supporting, no regulation, crazy fools!

Posted: Monday, May 6, 2013
Article comment by: dale RUFF

Since permits are not required for guns in Arizona, it would be logical to assume that the dude was a prohibited possessor, due to being a danger to others.

What doesn't make sense was why he was let free after terrorizing his family and then lying to the police about the weapon.

Bad buys with guns go free in Arizona?

Posted: Sunday, May 5, 2013
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

Is that why the accused was released on his own recognizance without bail, Mr. Bassett?

The law hasn't changed, and 2nd Amendment is well within reason asking why "failure to obtain a permit for a legally obtained weapon" has been added to the the charges possible for those involved in a domestic violence dispute. This isn't the first time this year that charge appeared in the standard lists.

Can someone who knows what they're talking about explain why it's applicable in this case?

Posted: Friday, May 3, 2013
Article comment by: Annie gitchurguns

Wanna go campin'? Pass a Psych eval. Seriously!!! It is people like this who ruin it for everyone. It all started with tainted tylenol, lol.
I was half kidding about the tylenol.

Posted: Friday, May 3, 2013
Article comment by: Cottonwood Native

Thank you, Mr. Bassett.

Posted: Friday, May 3, 2013
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

Mr. 2nd Amendment,

Please read this section again:

"Stratford was booked into the Camp Verde jail, charged with domestic violence assault, three counts of endangerment, having a gun that is not permitted and disorderly conduct. He has since been released on his own recognizance."

I believe that it means that having a gun, for this particular individual, is not permitted. He probably would not pass a background check. Now, I don't know the guy, I don't think I care to, but just based on his alleged actions I suspect he is a prime example of the kind of person society seeks to prevent from having access to guns, of any sort.

Correct me if I'm wrong.

Posted: Friday, May 3, 2013
Article comment by: 2nd Amendment

since when is it a crime in Arizona to carry a gun that doesn't have a permit? We don't have a registry in Arizona to my knowledge. And I never permitted any weapons that I have ever purchased from a gun show or from a private party. So now I'm going to be subject to arrest for not having a permit for my weapons, when did this law change?

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