FRANKLIN, TN (Tennessean) - A Franklin man told police he didn't realize the bullet that discharged while he was trying to clear a jammed rifle in his garage had struck anyone.
Mark Anthony Nelson, 38, of Franklin, turned himself in to police Tuesday night and said the shooting that injured a Nashville house painter working two doors down from Nelson's Grove Lane home was an accident.
Nelson told police he was handling a .22 caliber rifle at his home. In the arrest warrant, Nelson said he was trying to clear the jammed rifle and it discharged. He then disassembled the weapon, according to the Franklin Police Department.
A few hundred feet away, where the bullet struck Hildefonso Cocuyo, the painter didn't realize he had been shot.
Cocuyo was taking a break while waiting for his son to bring supplies. While kneeling down across the street from the home at 109 Grove Lane where he had been working, he felt a sharp pain in his left shoulder, according to police.
Cucuyo told police he reached back and felt blood on his back.
His son arrived shortly, and Cucuyo asked to be taken to the hospital. Doctors at Williamson Medical Center determined that the 48-year-old man had been shot and called Franklin police .
Cocuyo, who was released from the hospital later that day, does not speak English and had his son translate for him. The son did not return calls seeking comment.
Police canvassed the Polk Place neighborhood Sunday afternoon and called in a K-9 unit to search the woods around the homes. According to the police report, officers who knocked on the door of Nelson's home at 117 Grove Lane on Sunday were told by an unidentified resident that no one had heard or seen "anything out of the ordinary."
Nelson is charged with aggravated assault and tampering with evidence. His bond was $75,000 and a court date is scheduled for April 5.
Nelson's attorney, Lee Ofman, said he could not comment on the case. Messages left for Nelson were unreturned.