On 12/16/2022, the Anderson police department responded to the Fieldhouse Apartments located at 805 W. 13th St. in Anderson over a report of shots being fired inside the apartment building. Upon their arrival, they made contact with a female individual who stated that she lived in apartment 207 and that a bullet had come through her ceiling, narrowly missing her. Police officers were then directed to check apartment 305, which is located directly above hers.
As officers were walking up the stairs, they passed a male subject standing in the stairway holding a baby and were again alerted by occupants that he lived at or frequently visited apartment 305. The subject was identified as Anthony(last name withheld). While officers spoke with Anthony he led police to a vehicle in the parking lot occupied by two subjects, a female driver and a male passenger. As police made contact with the occupants of the car, they saw in plain view a rifle on the floorboard of the front passenger seat. The subject in the passenger seat was identified as Cody Merritt(18) of which dispatch confirmed he had outstanding warrants through Madison County, IN. The subject was transported to jail, and the weapon was seized.
During questioning, Cody stated that he was at the Fieldhouse apartments visiting a friend named Anthony. Cody said that he had been having problems with a subject (name withheld), who he claimed had robbed him of marijuana earlier that same day. He stated that while at the apartment, (name withheld) had been calling his phone and threatening him. Fearing that the subject would come to the apartment, Cody contacted a friend who he knew owned an AR-15 and had him bring the rifle to the apartment complex.
According to the Probable cause affidavit, Cody took the rifle and brought it into the apartment. He stated that he was in the living room of the apartment attempting to load the weapon and that the round got hung up in the chamber. When he tried to clear the weapon by “pushing the pin”, he grabbed the trigger by mistake, and the gun discharged into the floor. The bullet passed through the floor, entering the occupied apartment below.
The suspect placed the weapon down his pants and began to exit the apartment; Cody then stated that while he was walking that his pants began to fall down, and he grabbed them. While fighting with his pants, the gun fired off again, but this time the bullet went through the floor of the hallway into the hallway of the first floor. The suspect fled the building without attempting to see if either round had struck anyone; he allegedly did not attempt to call the authorities either.
The suspect is housed in the Madison County Jail; he is currently being held on charges of violation of juvenile probation(x2), criminal recklessness shooting a firearm into an inhabited structure, unauthorized abuse of home detention, criminal mischief, false informing/giving a false report of Commission of a crime.