Shooting victim made ‘bad decision’

Sheriff: Fla. man hit with shotgun blast after breaking window at home

William Bailey

A man who was shot Monday outside a home in Gateway told investigators he drove from Florida intent on getting inside the home to retrieve firearms ammunition he claimed belonged to him, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

William Bailey, 63, who lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., also acknowledged he made a “bad decision” and couldn’t explain why he decided to throw rocks at a home at 19200 Colorado Highway 141 shortly after midnight Monday.

“(Bailey) stated when (home resident Joseph Alesi) started firing, he got scared and tried to hide and get away,” the affidavit said.

Alesi told investigators he was awakened around 12:30 a.m. on Monday by the sound of something that hit the side of the house.

“He advised he waited a moment to see what was going on, at which point a rock crashed in through his master bedroom window, endangering he and his wife,” the affidavit said.

Alesi and Diana Bonfilio, who is identified in Mesa County Assessor’s Office records as the owner of the home, are married and live at the property.

With the lights off inside, Alesi was loading his 12-gauge shotgun when a third rock hit the side of his home. Peeking out windows, he couldn’t see anyone, the affidavit said.

With his wife hiding on the floor, Alesi walked out the back of the home, armed with the shotgun and flashlight. Walking on the home’s east side, he said he heard “something big” in the trees.

Alesi twice fired shots into the air and after each yelled out to ask who was there, but he received no response, the affidavit said. Alesi said he moved to the front of the property, heard a “louder noise” near some bushes and yelled out again.

“He stated he shined his light on the bush, but he was not wearing his glasses and could not see very well,” the affidavit said. “He stated the bushes moved again, and he fired his shotgun toward the ground. He stated he aimed low to the ground as he ‘did not want to hurt anyone badly.’ “

Alesi said he heard a “huhhh” noise from the bushes and realized he’d hit a person.

When asked, the wounded person said his name was Joe, the affidavit said.

Bailey and Bonfilio had known each other “years ago” from teaching in Florida, although the affidavit doesn’t specify the relationship between the two. Bailey had visited the home as a guest in April 2009, the affidavit said.

Alesi said he asked the wounded man, “What the hell are you doing? Why did you break out my window?” And the wounded man told him his brother did it, the affidavit said.

Bailey first told investigators his brother had been chasing him through town and was throwing rocks at him Monday night, and his brother ran off when the shotgun blasts started, the affidavit said.

Bailey then changed his story, saying he’d come to visit Alesi and Bonfilio and was hiding from his brother, and he ran up a tree when the shooting started because he was scared.

When contacted by investigators, the brother said he didn’t know Bailey was in Grand Junction, saying he last spoke with him in May 2009.

Bailey told investigators he came to Grand Junction “three to four” weeks ago and retrieved some property, and he left Florida June 23 or 24 with plans to get the rest of it. He acknowledged arriving in town around 10 p.m. on Sunday and heading straight for the home. Bailey’s truck was found parked roughly one-tenth of a mile from the home’s entrance.

The affidavit said Bailey accused Alesi of stealing a certain type of firearms ammunition, “several thousand” rounds.

Bailey’s brother told an investigator that Bailey is a manic depressive who has issues with alcohol and marijuana and owns “numerous guns,” the affidavit said.


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