A man who shot and injured Lady Gaga’s dog walker while stealing a dog has been jailed for 21 years.
James Howard Jackson pleaded no contest – as guilty – to attempted murder.
Ryan Fischer was walking the singer’s three French bulldogs in Hollywood in February 2021 when Jackson shot him in the chest, the court heard.
Mr. Fischer said he had to have part of his lung removed after the attack. He went to court Monday and said the shooting changed his life forever, CBS News reported.
The Los Angeles district attorney’s office called the attack a “callous act of violence.” Several other charges Jackson faced were dismissed as part of the plea deal.
Jackson and one of four other people followed and took two of the dogs, Koji and Gustav, after the shooting. The third bulldog, Miss Asia, ran away and was found by the police.
At the time, police said they believed the dogs were wanted because of their breed – not because of their owner’s identity. The two stolen dogs were returned unharmed two days later after Gaga offered a $500,000 (£359,000) reward.
His accomplice, Harold White, pleaded guilty Monday to violating a law that prohibits ex-convicts from possessing firearms. He will be sentenced next year.
White’s son, Jaylin Keyshawn White, and Lafayette’s Shon Whaley pleaded guilty last year to second-degree robbery and were sentenced to four and six years in prison, respectively. The person who returned the dogs, Jennifer McBride, was later charged with aiding and abetting attempted murder and her case is pending, according to the district attorney’s office.
Jackson’s trial was delayed after he was wrongly released from prison in April in what the US Marshals Service described at the time as a “clerical error”. He was arrested again the same month.