BENTON, Ark. (KTHV) -- In a bizarre case, a man was found shot in the chest in a stranger's yard Friday morning in Benton. After they began investigating, Benton Police said the shooting quickly became even more bizarre.
"He had actually shot himself, and he was provided assistance by a gentleman, a Mr. Jason Gaunt," said Lt. Kevin Russell with the Benton Police Department.
Lt. Russell said Jason Gaunt gave his friend Timothy Gauldin the gun that he used to shoot himself, and when police searched Gaunt's home, they found even more troubling evidence.
"There was marijuana found growing in his residence and also other drug paraphernalia," continued Lt. Russell.
But, according to Gaunt's attorney John Wesley Hall, that is not the whole story. He and his client maintain that Mr. Gauldin regretfully and unexpectedly shot himself in the chest without Gaunt's help. As for the drugs found in Gaunt's home, Hall said his client allegedly had a few small marijuana plants, which is a misdemeanor in Arkansas, but Lt. Russell said no matter the amount, the charge stands.
"I can't comment on exact numbers, but I mean anytime it is growing in the home, it is there. It is present, and it was located by detectives," said Lt. Russell.
Mr. Gauldin remains in serious condition at a Little Rock hospital. Police said there is no indication that he attempted suicide. They believe he shot himself with the help of Guant for other reasons they said will come to light as the investigation continues.
Guant is still on administrative leave from his position as a Spanish teacher for Little Rock schools. His attorney said Mr. Guant told him the police threatened him with retribution after he quote "lawyered up."
Benton Police said those allegations are false.
Little Rock teacher Jason Gaunt arrested in Timothy Gauldin shooting