New Year’s Day shooter released

Published 1:10 pm Wednesday, January 4, 2006

By By JOHN EBY / Niles Daily Star
DOWAGIAC - Scott Richard Hojara, 39, of Dowagiac, was released from the Cass County Jail on $50,000 cash or surety bond after a New Year's Day shooting outside the Dowagiac VFW hall in the 400 block of E. Division Street.
Hojara is accused of shooting Jai Villalobos, 26, following some kind of dispute around 12:45 a.m. Sunday in the parking lot outside the VFW.
Chief Assistant Prosecutor Jason Ronning said Tuesday morning it remains uncertain what the argument was about, but Hojara allegedly retrieved a pistol from his truck, fired it multiple times into the air, then pointed it at Villalobos and hit him in the arm.
Alcohol was a factor in the incident, Ronning said.
Hojara is charged with five felonies: assault with intent to murder, assault with intent to cause great bodily harm less than murder, carrying a dangerous weapon with unlawful intent, carrying a concealed weapon and assault with a dangerous weapon.
Each felony is paired with a companion felony firearm charge for a total of 10. Hojara is also charged with possessing a firearm while under the influence, a misdemeanor.
A Dowagiac Police Department account said the suspect initially fled the scene on foot, but returned and surrendered to officers at the scene investigating the shooting.