OGDEN — An Ogden resident accused of shooting a man after a 2018 downtown bar fight will go to trial later this week.
Erin Tramale Gaston, 25, will face jury starting on Thursday, Nov. 21, in Ogden’s 2nd District Court. Gaston is facing five counts of felony discharge of a firearm, a first-degree felony; one count of obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony; and riot, a third-degree felony.
Gaston and another man, 24-year-old Frenchman Davonti Dyer, were charged last September following a shooting in downtown Ogden near 25th Street. The shooting came on the heels of a fight that took place inside the Kokomo Club, a popular downtown bar. Three men were shot in a parking lot just north of the bar, with one man shot multiple times.
In February, Dyer pleaded guilty to one count of felony discharge of a firearm with serious bodily injury, a first-degree felony, and one count of riot, a third-degree felony. In return, he had three other charges dropped. Dyer was sentenced in March to serve a term of five years to life in a Utah state prison.
During a preliminary hearing for Gaston on Feb. 4, the victim shot five times testified that he recognized the face of the man who shot him, and identified him as Gaston.
The man testified that one bullet shattered his right elbow, two others grazed his frontside, and two bullets became lodged in his hip. He told the court that the bullets are still in his side, as doctors told him it would cause more damage taking them out than leaving them in. The shooting has left him disabled, he said, as he cannot stand up for more than 15 minutes without his right leg going numb. Gaston pleaded not guilty to the charges in February.
Though the charges against Gaston were bound over, as the burden of proof is low in preliminary hearings, questions remain in the case.
One of the men shot alleged that after seeing another man shot five times, he ran after the shooter. After chasing him down, that man was shot by the assailant in the stomach. Police believe that shooter to be Dyer, although testimony alleges that Gaston was the one who shot the first victim five times.
The victim who gave chase described the shooter as a black man with a skinny frame and medium-length dreadlocks, which does not match descriptions of Gaston nor Dyer.
Judge Ernie Jones said near the end of Gaston’s preliminary hearings that the biggest issue with the case is that of identification.
Jones added that there’s a possible case that could be made as to if Gaston should be charged with five first-degree felonies because he allegedly pulled the trigger five times. However, Jones said, those are issues that will have to be addressed during a trial.
Gaston’s trial will begin Thursday and last for four days, with the last trial date set for Nov. 26. He is currently being held without bail at the Weber County Jail.