Bloomfield man charged in Wednesday shooting, death

Thursday, December 30, 2021

BLOOMFIELD — A Bloomfield man is facing murder charges following an early morning shooting Wednesday.

According to the probable cause statement, at approximately 4:01 a.m. Wednesday, Stoddard County 911 received a call from a residence at 22790 County Road 503 in Bloomfield. During the call, a male was heard yelling “help” and a woman was heard screaming in the background.

Detective Garry Brady II, with the Stoddard County Sheriff’s Department, said in the statement that Deputy Nick Lillard arrived at the residence and found a female, Misty Ladawn Reynolds, lying on the front porch bleeding. A male, John James Clary, came to the door and was instructed by Lillard to lay on the ground.

Clary was then handcuffed and detained. Upon being asked where the gun was, Clary said he did not have one and it was in the bedroom. Clary stated that Reynolds had fallen and shot herself.

Brady said Lillard felt a slight pulse on Reynolds and advised EMS. Lillard also located a single hole in her upper left chest. Reynolds was taken to SoutheastHEALTH in Dexter, where she was pronounced dead at approximately 5:39 a.m.

Brady said in his probable cause statement that Lillard cleared the residence and no one else was there. While clearing the residence Lillard found a trail of blood leading to the east bedroom, which was in disarray. Brady said authorities applied for and executed a search warrant for the residence. 

During the search, Brady said, numerous items were located, including a .22-caliber rifle and a .22-caliber pistol. Brady said the pistol was reported stolen in Scott County.

Brady said Clary was questioned by investigators and admitted to using methamphetamine at the residence on Tuesday (Dec. 29) after midnight and arguing with Reynolds.

“John (Clary) first stated that during the arguing, Misty (Reynolds) picked up the .22-caliber pistol and held it in her hand with her finger in the trigger,” said Brady. “He tried to grab the gun and push it upward, but it went off and she was shot in the chest above the heart.”

Brady said Clary then stated he may have seen the gun, grabbed for it at the same time as Reynolds and it went off, shooting Reynolds.

“John (Clary) admitted if he was not under the influence of methamphetamine and did have PTSD, he would not have grabbed the .22-caliber pistol and Misty would be alive,” said Brady in the probable cause statement. “John stated Misty did not threaten him with the pistol or threaten to harm herself with the pistol.”

Brady said Clary later told Missouri State Highway Patrol Trooper Matt Foster that he and Reynolds were arguing. Clary said during the argument, Reynolds said she was going to see an ex-boyfriend. According to Brady, Clary stated after Reynolds told him about the ex-boyfriend, he grabbed the .22-caliber pistol, which was on the bed, and told her he would go kill the ex-boyfriend. Clary said Reynolds then grabbed his hand with the pistol.

“John (Clary) stated while Misty was leaning into him, he pulled the trigger and shot her,” said Brady. 

Additionally, “John admitted the .22-caliber rifle was his and the pistol was possibly stolen. John is a convicted felon (he was convicted in 2014 of distribution/delivering/manufacturing a controlled substance) and knew he could not legally own a firearm,” Brady said. According to the probable cause statement, Clary is currently on probation. 

Brady said Clary admitted in all interviews that he carried Reynolds to the front porch and laid her down while calling 911 to get help for her. Clary said he tried to find his keys to drive her to the hospital, but could not locate them.

Stoddard County Prosecutor Russ Oliver said Clary has been charged with murder in the second degree, felony murder, felon in possession of a firearm and possession of a stolen firearm.

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