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Spencer St. Claire

St. Claire

The man injured in a Mandan shooting has been criminally charged in what police have described as a "complex" incident that involved as many as six or seven people.

Spencer Carl James St. Claire, 22, of Bismarck, faces a charge of felony criminal trespass. He and two or three other men knocked on the door of 18-year-old Eric Harrison Jr.'s mobile home just before 6 a.m. Dec. 2 on the 800 block of Poplar Street in Mandan, wanting in from the cold, according to court documents.

Harrison told police he didn't recognize the men and told them to go away and that he was armed. When he opened the door to tell them to leave, he alleges he was pepper sprayed and the men pushed their way in.

Harrison said he then went into his kitchen and opened fire with his AK-47. He said he believed he hit two of the intruders, who all fled.

St. Claire was found a block away on the 900 block of North Woodland Drive, screaming and partly under a car trailer in a driveway. He had been shot in the left leg, was taken to a hospital, later released and arrested Dec. 5.

The case's affidavit reported St. Claire said "he had done methamphetamine before doing a burglary" that involved three people. He said the others fled in a gray GMC Envoy. 

Police interviewed Harrison's roommates, whose stories largely corroborate Harrison's, as indicated in the affidavit.

Court documents say police found two AK-47s, a small amount of marijuana, three empty shell casings near the door and multiple rounds throughout the residence.

Mandan Police Lt. Pat Haug said St. Claire was the only one shot and only one charged as yet.

Why St. Claire and the others allegedly tried to enter Harrison's home remains unclear.

"That is something we're actively working," Haug said. 

One of several theories Haug said investigators are working on is that the incident may have been related to a drug purchase.

St. Claire is held at the Burleigh-Morton County Detention Center, pending $10,000 cash bond. His preliminary hearing is set for Jan. 22. He may have no contact with the people at the Poplar Street mobile home.

Reach Jack Dura at 701-250-8225 or jack.dura@bismarcktribune.com.

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Crime and Courts Reporter