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Felon on probation allegedly shoots himself, faces firearm, child endangerment charges

by Steven Mross | March 31, 2023 at 4:03 a.m.
Nedraya L. McGowan - Submitted photo

A felon on probation who allegedly shot himself in the face accidentally last month, endangering three children he was babysitting at the time, was arrested on multiple felony warrants Wednesday.

Nedraya Latrayvion McGowan, 30, who lists a Trivista Right address, was taken into custody around 1:30 p.m. and charged with possession of a firearm by certain persons, punishable by up to 20 years in prison, three counts of first-degree endangering the welfare of a minor, each punishable by up to six years, and felony failure to appear.

McGowan remained in custody Thursday on a zero bond and is set to appear today in Garland County District Court.

According to court records, on Dec. 15, 2021, McGowan was convicted of a felony count of aggravated assault on a family or household member and sentenced to five years' supervised probation. He was convicted on Aug. 30, 2022, of felony nonsupport over $10,000 and sentenced to 10 years in prison, all suspended. He was arrested on Jan. 27 on felony drug charges and released on Feb. 21 on a $3,500 bond with his arraignment set for April 5 in Garland County Circuit Court.

According to the probable cause affidavit, on Feb. 24, shortly before 5:30 p.m., Hot Springs police Detective Shawn Woodall responded to National Park Medical Center regarding a shooting victim identified as McGowan.

McGowan reportedly told Woodall he was walking back to an apartment in the 300 block of Autumn Street from a tobacco store on East Grand Avenue when he was approached by an unknown man who asked him for a cigarette.

He said the man then pulled a gun on him and the two got into a fight during which the gun went off and shot McGowan in the face. He said he continued to the Autumn Street apartment and had a family member take him to the hospital.

He described the gun as a revolver that "had to be at least a .38-caliber or bigger." While Woodall was still speaking to McGowan, officers who had gone to the apartment on Autumn were reportedly with two female witnesses who stated McGowan had shot himself.

Woodall went to the apartment and spoke to the two women, who stated McGowan had been there with one of the women babysitting his three children, ages 1, 4 and 7. They said McGowan was in the living room "messing around with his revolver" that he had brought with him.

While handling the gun, McGowan loaded it and moments later it went off. They said McGowan shot himself in the face and the bullet went into the living room ceiling. They noted the three children were upstairs playing "directly above" McGowan at the time.

After shooting himself, McGowan reportedly ran to his cousin's apartment across the courtyard and had her drive him to the hospital. Woodall noted there was a bullet hole in the ceiling where the witnesses had indicated McGowan fired.

McGowan had reportedly left the gun behind and Woodall located it inside a backpack in the living room after the two women gave him consent to retrieve it. It was determined to be a black Smith and Wesson .38-caliber revolver with two casings inside the cylinder and one was spent. There was also reportedly blood on the barrel of the gun.

Based on McGowan's felony history, which would prohibit him from owning or possessing a firearm and the potential danger to the children, a warrant was issued for his arrest on March 1.

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