UPDATE: More details released after deadly Redding shooting – Suspect arrested after fleeing scene

UPDATED: Thursday, March 17, 4:36 p.m.

Originally Published: Wednesday, March 16, 10:42 p.m.

See Original Story below.

REDDING, Calif., — Authorities say a local man who fatally shot another man outside his Redding home was arrested after fleeing the scene of the deadly shooting last night, Wednesday, March 16. The victim has since been identified as 47-year-old, James Wade Schwerdt, of Redding.

The shooting, which was reported by numerous nearby residents, happened in the 13000 block of Fernie Way, southeast of Bear Mountain Road and Old Oregon Trail. The suspect was ultimately apprehended about a mile from the scene of the fatal shooting, near the intersection of Alpha Lane and Portero Road, according to officials.


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Shasta County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the scene shortly before 7 p.m. after SHASCOM emergency dispatchers received numerous 911 calls reporting a shooting outside the residence, Shasta County Major Crimes Unit Lieutenant Chris Edwards has since reported.

Official radio traffic at the time indicated that witnesses to the shooting could hear a man screaming for help in the driveway of the home and saying he had been shot in the leg and could not move. 911 callers then updated hearing a second shot and reported they could no longer hear the man calling for help.

“Deputies were also updated that a male, believed to be the suspect and the homeowner of the address, was possibly armed, walking around the property, yelling, and setting small fires,” Edwards said of the deadly incident.

Steven Ronald Schlapia, 58, of Redding, was arrested after allegedly shooting a man outside Schlapia’s Redding home last night. KRCR main image, Shasta County Sheriff’s Office booking photo (inset)

Based on the circumstances, deputies who were responding to the scene requested additional resources. Redding PD and CHP officers then began converging on the area to assist, with RPD sending members of their Crisis Intervention Response Team (CIRT), along with an armored rescue vehicle and an unmanned aerial drone equipped with FLIR nighttime cameras to the scene.

While officials staged at a nearby location and began setting up a perimeter before responding to the scene, a Code Red notification was issued to area residents, alerting them to the crisis and advising citizens to shelter in place until the situation could be resolved.

Once deputies and officers from the three agencies had established a perimeter around the residence, they approached the home, at which time they located the shooting victim. Deputies updated that the man appeared to have been shot in the leg and head and had sustained burn injuries. Although a tactical medic was called in to the still active and unsecured scene, the victim ultimately succumbed to his injuries and passed away.

Suspecting that Schlapia may flee into a large and open area to the south of his home northeast of Redding, responding deputies had already established a multi-agency perimeter including CHP and Redding officers, ultimately leading to the suspect’s swift arrest.

Deputies soon learned the suspect was last seen walking behind the residence toward a large field that lies to the south of the Fernie Way home where the shooting had occurred, according to Edwards.

At around 9:15 p.m., Redding police officers, who had pre-staged in a neighborhood south of where the shooting occurred, located and detained a man who was found to be covered in soot in the area of Alpha Lane and Portero Road.

Although the man initially provided officers with a false name, using the name and date of birth of his brother, he was soon properly identified as 58-year-old Steven Ronald Schlapia. He was later also confirmed to be the owner of the residence where the fatal shooting had occurred.


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With Schlapia apprehended, members of the Shasta County Sheriff’s Major Crimes Unit Detectives responded to the scene and assumed the investigation.

Based on their investigative findings, MCU officials arrested Schlapia and he was later booked into the Shasta County Jail in Redding on suspicion of first-degree murder.

Online jail records indicate Schlapia remains in custody in lieu of $1 million bail or bond. He is scheduled to be arraigned on Friday, March 18 at the Shasta County Superior Court.

Anyone with additional information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact the Major Crimes Unit at (530) 245-6135 or by email. Callers can refer to incident file number 22S007833 and can remain anonymous.

Click here to view an incident log posted by Joetta Ferguson of Facebook’s Redding Crime and Community Alert/Shasta County after last night’s fatal shooting.

Original Story: Investigation continuing after deadly Redding shooting

REDDING, Calif., — Although few details have been released, officials have confirmed that a murder investigation is underway after a shooting outside a Redding home that occurred earlier this evening in the 13000 block of Fernie Way, south of Bear Mountain Road and Old Oregon Trail.

Shasta County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the scene shortly before 7 p.m., according to official radio traffic.

911 callers reported hearing a shooting during a loud argument, followed by a man who could be heard yelling for help. 

While deputies were responding to the scene, callers reported hearing a second gunshot and told dispatchers that they could no longer hear the victim calling for help. Callers also reported seeing the suspected gunman, who was believed to live at the residence where the shooting occurred, setting multiple small fires outside the residence and inside or near the home’s garage.

Based on the circumstances, additional resources were requested from Redding PD and California Highway Patrol, with RPD sending members of their Crisis Intervention Response Team (CIRT) to the scene, along with an armored rescue vehicle and an unmanned aerial drone equipped with FLIR nighttime cameras.

After setting up a perimeter around the residence and surrounding neighborhood, deputies located the shooting victim, at which time a tactical medic was summoned to the still-active scene. It was not immediately clear if the victim was already deceased when he was located or if he passed away at a later time.

At around 9:15 p.m., Redding officers who had pre-staged in a neighborhood south of where the shooting occurred, located and detained a man who was found with soot-covered hands from the fires he allegedly set in the immediate aftermath of the shooting.

Although radio traffic at the time indicated the detained subject was believed to be the suspected gunman, his name was not immediately available.

A Code Red alert notification, which was issued shortly after the shooting was reported and advised residents within a half-mile of the scene to shelter in place, was lifted around 10 p.m.

Contacted for further information, officials said more details would be released when available.

The Sheriff’s investigation is continuing, and no further information has been released.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information becomes available.

Contact the writer: [email protected]

Trevor Montgomery, 51, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and operates Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS), which act as stringer-news providers for other mainstream media organizations throughout the two regions they serve.

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.