A Durango man who shot a rifle into his neighbor’s house and threatened a police officer with the gun was sentenced Thursday to 90 days in jail and two years on probation.
Ian Kenneth Meier, 21, pleaded guilty March 1 to felony menacing and prohibited use of a firearm.
According to an arrest affidavit, Meier was drinking alcohol and cleaning his AR15 semi-automatic rifle about 11:30 p.m. July 24 at his house in the 300 block of Hillcrest Drive in the SkyRidge subdivision when the weapon discharged two rounds.
One of the shots entered his neighbor’s house and passed over a bed where someone was sleeping.
When police arrived, Meier stepped into an open doorway and raised his weapon toward Durango Police Officer Bryan Heaton, who was 20 to 30 feet away. Heaton yelled at Meier to drop the weapon and fired two rounds from his shotgun, missing Meier with both shots.
Meier escaped through a back door, prompting a 10-15 minute search by law enforcement. Meier eventually approached a police officer about three houses away and said he accidentally discharged the rifle. He was arrested without incident.
Meier had few words Thursday prior to sentencing. He asked for one year of probation instead of two years, saying he plans to attend the University of Colorado and do international travel to further his degree in international diplomacy.
But District Judge Jeffrey Wilson said if Meier is successful on probation, he can apply to reduce his sentence.
Prior to this charge, Meier had no criminal record. The plea agreement was drafted with police officer Heaton’s input, said Deputy District Attorney Reid Stewart.
In an interview with police, Meier denied know Heaton was a police officer, and he didn’t remember putting the rifle to his shoulder, according to an arrest affidavit.
Meier has begun serving his 90 days in jail.