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November 26, 2014

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Attorney seeks reduced charges, bail, saying shooting was accidental

Man says he thought gun was unloaded when houseguest asked him to point and shoot

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Colin Lowrey appears in Henderson Justice Court for the accidental killing of a friend Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013.

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Colin Lowrey

Army Reservist Colin Lowrey told Henderson Police he thought his gun was unloaded when a houseguest asked him to point it at her head.

Lowrey had taken out the handgun to disassemble and clean it at the request of a woman from Norway during a video chat on omegle.com. Lowrey left the gun for a moment to use the restroom; when he returned, his guest Cherish Noelle Pincombe, 23, asked him to point it at her head.

Lowrey complied and pulled the trigger, thinking the chamber was empty. But he was wrong. The gun fired, killing Pincombe.

These were the details from the Oct. 22 incident outlined in a Henderson Police arrest report and explained during a court hearing today. Lowrey, 22, is charged with open murder, but his attorney, Stephen Stein, argued during the hearing that the case involves either manslaughter or accidental death and that the bail should reflect that.

Henderson Justice Court Judge David Gibson set Lowrey’s bail at $200,000.

“After I reviewed the evidence, I don’t see any intent, and I don’t see any premeditation based on the facts as I know them,” Stein said. “My plan was to talk to the (district attorney) to iron out something based on what we know.”

Lowrey told police he believes Pincombe inserted the gun magazine and loaded it when he went to the bathroom, the report said. In a phone interview today after the hearing, Stein said other residents who shared the home told him that Pincombe was acting strange about 10 days before the incident.

According to the roommates, Stein said, Pincombe began saying things such as, “If I happen to die, would you miss me?”

“Which is indicative to me of somebody in need of help, but I have to put that (evidence) together,” Stein said.

After the incident, Lowrey called 911 to report an accidental shooting and attempted CPR on Pincombe.

According to the report, however, because Lowrey was proficient with guns and training on how to safely handle a gun but still pointed it at Pincombe’s head, he was charged with murder.

Lowery will appear in court for another bail hearing Nov. 6. Stein said his goal is to reduce Lowrey’s bail.

“If this was purely accidental, he shouldn’t be sitting in jail rotting,” Stein said.

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