The man insisted he wasn’t armed – he simply found the gun lying in the grass after the drug dealer shot at him.
The suspected dealer admitted he’d shot at the man but said he pulled the trigger only after the man grabbed some marijuana and pointed a gun at him.
Pierce County prosecutors have charged both men with unlawfully possessing a firearm.
Steven Lawley, 24, the suspected drug dealer, is to be arraigned Dec. 30.
Digital Access for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Drake Evans-McGee, 22, who allegedly tried to buy the marijuana from Lawley, pleaded not guilty Tuesday and was ordered jailed in lieu of $20,000 bail.
It all went down Aug. 5 outside a Pierce County home, according to charging papers.
Neighbors called 911 after hearing gunshots. Deputies found Evans-McGee suffering from a gunshot wound.
He told deputies he’d gone to the home to buy pot but had been shot when he walked in the door and as he tried to run, according to the charging papers.
He would not let deputies look at his cell phone. Deputies told him they’d found a gun near where he’d fallen and asked if his fingerprints were on it.
“Evans-McGee responded that he now suddenly remembered something,” court records state.
“He now claimed that when he fled, he fell down outside and saw a gun in the grass. He grabbed it, spun around and tried to fire at his assailant. He said he fell down again and dropped the firearm.”
Deputies didn’t believe him. They told him to fess up about bringing a gun to the drug buy for protection. Evans-McGee stuck to his story.
Lawley gave deputies a different account. He allegedly admitted to arranging to sell Evans-McGee marijuana but said he shot at him once Evans-McGee snatched the drugs out of his hand and pulled a gun.
“Lawley said he had no idea if he had hit Evans-McGee,” charging papers state. “He said he just ran away.”
A pistol believed to be Lawley’s was found in the bushes at the scene of the shooting.