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Defense lawyers request dismissal of Post Falls gas station shooter's charge

Tisen Sterkel is charged with a dozen felonies for the shooting.

POST FALLS, Idaho — Lawyers for the man who randomly shot at several people in December at a Post Fall Gas station want to see some of his charges dismissed.  

Tisen Sterkel is charged with a dozen felonies for the shooting. Although court documents say he admitted to the shooting at people, he’s pleaded not guilty to every charge.  

Security video from the Conoco gas station on Highway 41 shows the suspect aiming his rifle and shooting multiple times. This left two people injured, but they are expected to be okay. Investigators said Sterkel immediately left the area and carjacked two different vehicles.  

Jacob Sheppard was shot in the neck while at the gas station. He is expected to be okay. But his wife, Dominque Sheppard, told KREM 2 at the time that it will be a long recovery. 

“I’m not sure if Jake will be back at work at all anytime soon,” Sheppard said. 

In January, the judge dismissed one of Sterkel’s aggravated assault charges. 

Meanwhile, his defense attorneys want to see five more charges dropped. Including aggravated battery, stolen vehicle, and robbery. 

Sterkel’s lawyers argue, based on video evidence, he could not have seen the victims he shot from where he was standing. They also say the state must prove Sterkel intended to shoot at the two victims. The defense doesn’t believe they can.   

As for the charges relating to the stolen vehicles, the defense claims there is no evidence of theft. But rather “a series of swapping vehicles in a desperate and inherently flawed attempt to get away from someone.” 

Court docs say Sterkel told police he did not know why he shot at people and thought something inside of him snapped.  

A judge will decide whether to dismiss these five charges next month. The trial is set for June 13.  

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