HANCOCK COUNTY, Ind. — A New Palestine man was arrested after police say he fired a gun multiple times outside of his home while Little League baseball games were playing nearby.
According to court documents, several people called police on Friday, September 16 to report shots fired at a home near the intersection of County Roads 600 West and 200 South. According to court documents, the home is just 500 feet from the field where the New Palestine Youth League (NPYL) plays baseball.
Police spoke to a man at the home, identified as 43-year-old Jason Linville, who told them he had fired three rounds from his 9mm handgun at chipmunks in his backyard.
After a Hancock County Sheriff’s deputy gave him a warning for violating an ordinance against firing a firearm within 300 feet of a residence not in relation to the prevention of a crime, Jason Linville reportedly said what he did was “dumb” and that he was sorry.
As the deputy was leaving in his patrol vehicle, court documents say he was waved down by a woman who identified herself as Linville’s wife.
The woman told police Jason Linville pointed a gun at her head and then fired it into the ground several times.
The shots had happened while games were being played at the nearby ballpark of the NPYL. The game was stopped, and all of the players were removed from the field as a precaution. Several people leaving the game approached police outside of the home to express interest in giving a statement.
Several witnesses described hearing shots being fired, then stopping, and then starting again. One of the witnesses said he heard as many as “15 shots very quickly” in one of the instances.
The witness also said several people could hear bullets hitting the batting cages, and another said they could hear them coming “through the trees.”
A few of the witnesses told police a father of one of the players went to the house of the suspect and spoke to the man there, but there were no details about the conversation.
Court documents allege investigators found no damage to the ballpark, but they did find a bullet hole in a detached garage and a barn on the property. Spent rounds were also found on the home’s back porch and in the barn.
Jason Linville was arrested and preliminary charged with pointing a firearm at another person and criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon.
Police said Linville told them where he hid the gun in his house, but court documents show investigators did not find it.
The NPYL issued a statement to family members following the incident, which said it is “committed to creating the safest environment for our players and families.” It went on to thank parents and coaches who helped ensure everyone’s safety by getting players off the field.