Man charged with murder in shooting of neighbor

Prosecutors on Monday filed a first-degree murder charge and 12 other counts against a Grand Junction man accused of shooting to death a neighbor who intervened in an argument between him and his wife.

In addition to murder, Robert McCleland, 31, was charged with first-degree assault, second-degree assault, menacing with a deadly weapon, reckless endangerment, two counts of prohibited use of a weapon and six sentence-enhancing counts of committing a crime of violence.

Public Defender John Burkey waived McCleland’s right to a preliminary hearing within 30 days. He will return to court April 12.

McCleland allegedly fatally shot 27-year-old Andrew Boxa outside McCleland’s Texas Avenue home on March 7.

According to court records, Boxa walked over to McCleland’s home to try to calm him down. McCleland told police he retrieved a pistol from his bedroom, pointed it at Boxa and told him to leave. When Boxa didn’t, McCleland fired a shot into his front yard in front of Boxa, then shot Boxa in the leg. When Boxa still wouldn’t leave, McCleland shot him in the head.

McCleland admitted to officers that he’d been drinking prior to the shooting.

He continues to be held in the Mesa County Jail on $1 million bond.


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