The U.S. Marshals Service has issued a $5000 reward for anyone who finds James Howard Jackson, the man who was arrested and charged with shooting Lady Gaga’s dog walker after he was accidentally released from prison earlier this year due to an administrative mistake.
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The Los Angeles Country Sheriff’s Department first announced the snafu four months ago when they asked for aid from the public. Jackson is alleged to have shot Gaga’s dogwalker Ryan Fischer in the chest with a .40-caliber handgun while Fischer was out with the singer’s three french bulldogs.
He reportedly carried out the ambush with two conspirators, Jaylin White and Lafayette Whaley, due to the value of the dogs’ breed, prosecutors said. The three men were ultimately charged with one count each of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit robbery, and second-degree robbery.
As the Sheriff’s Department sought help from the U.S. Marshals Service, they admitted Jackson was freed because his case on the department’s website read “dismissed” even though it remained active under a new superseding indictment.
“The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the inadvertent release from custody of defendant James Howard Jackson,” the department said back in April. “Defendant Jackson attended court proceedings at the Clara Shortridge Criminal Justice Center on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, and was released from custody on Wednesday, April 6, 2022, due to a clerical error. The investigation is continuing and the LASD Major Crimes Bureau is actively working to get Mr. Jackson back in custody.”
Jackson had been in custody for nearly a year before his release. Prosecutors said that when Jackson was arraigned on the new superseding indictment that was filed under a new case number, “the old case then dismissed by a judge as required by law.”
During the original hearing, Fischer testified that Jackson jumped out of the car, pulled a gun, and demanded he hand over her three pets: Asia, Gustav, and Koji.
“They pointed down to the dogs, that they wanted the dogs, and I said, ‘No.’ And I started to scream for help and tried to fight back,” he testified.
His testimony went on to say that one of the assailants threw him into a concrete embankment and began to choke him. He then hit the man with a bottle of champagne purchased at a nearby store, broke free, and tried to grab one of the dogs.
“The dog screamed at me, and I reached for him, and then the guy, the man with the gun, shot me as I was reaching,” Fischer said. He then collapsed on the ground as the assailants fled the scene with Gustav and Koji in a white Nissan Sentra.
(Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images for Fashion Media)