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Police & Fire

Man Fires Assault Rifle In Area Of Deputy, Ulster Sheriff's Office Says

An Ulster County man has been arrested for allegedly firing an assault rifle in the area of a sheriff's deputy.
An Ulster County man has been arrested for allegedly firing an assault rifle in the area of a sheriff's deputy. Photo Credit: Pixabay/tevenet

This story has been updated.

An Ulster County man has been arrested for allegedly firing an assault rifle in the area of a sheriff's deputy.

Clayton W Shafer, age 52, of Shokan, was arrested around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 9, after the Ulster County Sheriff's Office received a call from a concerned friend requesting a welfare check at a location in Port Ewen, following some concerning content he had allegedly just posted to his Facebook account, said Lt. Joseph Sciutto.

When the deputy arrived, Shafer is alleged to have confronted the deputy in the driveway while armed with an AR-15 rifle, Sciutto said.

A brief standoff ensued, during which Shafer's rifle was discharged in a different direction from the deputy.

Additional law enforcement personnel soon arrived and Shafer was taken into custody without further incident. Neither Shafer nor any law enforcement personnel was injured during the incident, Sciutto said.

Detectives later executed a search warrant at the location and recovered 18 rifles and shotguns, including the AR-15 alleged to have been used in the incident.

At this time, these firearms appear to have been legally possessed.

Shafer was charged with the felony of menacing a police/peace officer and arraigned in the Town of Esopus Court. 

 He was released to reappear on a later date and an order of protection was issued on behalf of the deputy. 

Shafer was then removed by deputies to Health Alliance of the Hudson Valley, Broadway Campus, for a mental health evaluation.

This investigation remains active and additional charges will be filed.

The department was assisted by the New York State Police, Town of Ulster Police, Kingston Police, Ulster County Emergency Response Team, and Mobile Life Support Support Services.

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