Shiprock man accused of fatally shooting man during fight at residence near Shiprock

Joshua Kellogg
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — A Shiprock man faces a federal murder charge for allegedly shooting a man to death during a fight at a residence near Shiprock earlier this month.

The defendant is also under investigation for allegedly firing gunshots at Navajo Police Department officers during a high-speed pursuit.

Jameson Begaye, 41, has been charged with murder committed in Indian Country, according to a U.S. Department of Justice press release.

The defendant is accused of shooting a man twice in his torso on the night of March 7 at a residence near Shiprock, according to court documents.

The only information released on the man fatally shot is the initials “K.B.” with a birth year of 1970. He is listed as “John Doe” in Begaye’s complaint.

He had a gunshot wound to his chest and one to his abdomen.

The man died at Northern Navajo Medical Center in Shiprock an hour after being transported to the hospital by a third party.

A witness who heard four gunshots and saw a black Chevy Malibu flee the residence following the shooting notified the Navajo Police Department.

Officers went to the residence, where they spoke to a woman.

She told officers she and John Doe were inside the residence when they heard a car pull up and heard someone running to the door who was later identified as Begaye.

John Doe tried to keep Begaye from entering the residence but was unable to, according to the woman.

Begaye got into fight with John Doe then allegedly pulled out a black handgun and fired multiple gunshots at the man, according to court documents.

Officers found a substance consistent with blood along with multiple spent .22 caliber cartridge casings on the floor in the residence.

On March 8, a black Chevy Malibu registered to Begaye was found driving outside of Shiprock.

A criminal investigator tried to speak to Begaye, but the defendant got in the vehicle then led police in a high-speed pursuit.

The Malibu was headed southbound on U.S. Highway 491 when multiple gunshots were fired from the vehicle toward Navajo officers.

One of the rounds struck the windshield of an NPD vehicle, according to court documents and Navajo police press release.

No officers were injured during the incident.

The officers returned gunfire toward the Malibu then deployed a tire deflation device, eventually rendering the vehicle undrivable.

The three occupants, including Begaye, were taken into custody.

The black .22 caliber handgun was thrown out of the window during the pursuit and was located on March 9.

Begaye in an interview denied having a handgun or shooting anyone on March 7.

A second witness told investigators that Begaye admitted to shooting someone on March 7.

The second witness was in the vehicle at the time of alleged incident and saw Begaye go inside the residence then return to the Malibu with blood on his clothing.

A third witness told investigators she saw Begaye fire a handgun at police officers. She was in the vehicle during the high-speed pursuit.

The murder case does not include charges related to the shots fired at the Navajo officers.

FBI Spokesman Frank Fisher told The Daily Times the investigation into the shots fired incident is still on-going.

Joshua Kellogg covers breaking news for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627 or via email at jkellogg@daily-times.com.

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