Gage Young indicted on four new charges
On Jan.18, the 22-year-old West Lebanon man charged with the non-fatal shooting of a visiting Providence College student near campus last fall was indicted on four new charges relating to the Nov. 2 incident. The man, Gage Young, has pled not guilty on all charges and is set to return to court for a pretrial hearing on Feb. 27.
The shooting has led the Department of Safety and Security to consider changes to the way it handles similar emergencies in the future, according to Safety and Security director Keysi Montás.
Young waived arraignment on Monday, allowing the new charges to be formalized. A court date will soon be set, according to the Grafton County District Attorney’s office administrator Alison Farina.
The new indictments add to the six already leveled at the defendant by a Grafton County grand jury. According to court documents, Young is charged with second degree assault with a deadly weapon and other allegations stemming from events following the shooting in November, including a brief car chase with Lebanon police.
Thomas Elliot, a freshman at Providence College, was walking near the Christian Science Reading Room on School Street in Hanover with friends attending Dartmouth when he was injured in the shooting.
Because the incident spans both jurisdictions, in the hours following the incident, the Lebanon and Hanover Police Departments worked jointly on the case to demonstrate probable cause for an arrest warrant.
Hanover Police Chief Charlie Dennis said the investigation is ongoing.
“We’re still doing our job of working through the case,” Dennis said.
Young has been in custody since being denied bail in a Nov. 5 hearing. Defense attorney Simon Mayo said his client was not the shooter in the Nov. 2 incident, implying that 17-year-old accomplice Hector Correa was responsible for the assault.
“The state’s case essentially … is that my client discharged a firearm that struck a passerby. And our position is that my client did not discharge that firearm,” Mayo said.
Police maintain that Correa was driving the car that night and that Young was a passenger and fired the shot that injured Elliot.
Correa, a minor, is not currently facing assault-related charges.
On Tuesday, Young’s attorneys presented motions to unseal Correa’s juvenile court records as well as personal and academic records. Mayo said the measure was intended to discredit Correa as a primary witness to the attack.
“Hector Correa is the shooter,” Mayo said. “In a nutshell, that is the defense.”
Dennis said in a November interview that the motive for the shooting was “random.”
Montás said he was pleased with the department and law enforcement’s handling of the situation in November, given the benefit of hindsight.
However, he also said that time to reflect on the incident has prompted him to consider some changes to Safety and Security’s communication system for future crises. According to Montás, the department is considering the addition of employees to handle disseminating information on unfolding situations.
He also said the department might be adding dedicated staff for callers asking for information instead of reporting emergencies. He said calls by worried parents and students overloaded the department’s call bank during the November shooting.
“That’s a concern every time something happens,” he said. “911 gets it, we get it.”
Dennis said he was also happy with the joint law enforcement response on the night of the shooting, but said he had noticed a change in public perception.
“Anytime you have a significant event such as this, it does cause people to question safety,” he said.