Man Who Shot Lady Gaga’s Dog Walker Sentenced to 21 Years in Prison

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There’s been an update in the case regarding the shooting of Lady Gaga‘s dog walker.

James Howard Jackson pleaded no contest to one count of attempted murder on Dec. 5 and was sentenced to 21 years in prison, the Associated Press, citing officials, reported. According to the news organization, Jackson admitted to inflicting great bodily injury on the singer’s dog walker Ryan Fischer, who survived a shooting that occurred during a dognapping incident in February 2021.

“The plea agreement holds Mr. Jackson accountable for perpetrating a cold-hearted, violent act,” the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said, per the AP, “and provides justice for our victim.”

The news comes eight months after Jackson was accidentally released from prison, with the Sheriff’s Department telling the AP this was “due to a clerical error.” He was recaptured in August.

In April 2021, the L.A. District Attorney’s Office announced that Jackson was among the five people charged for their alleged roles in the shooting of Fischer that February. The office said Fischer had been walking three French bulldogs owned by Lady Gaga when he was approached by Jackson, Jaylin Keyshawn White and Lafayette Shon Whaley.

“The defendants struggled with the victim who was allegedly shot by Jackson,” the office said at the time. “They are accused of grabbing two of the prized dogs and fleeing in a vehicle. The victim was taken to a hospital with serious injuries. The dogs were later turned over unharmed to police.”

David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Jackson was charged with one count each of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit robbery and second-degree robbery. In addition, the office said he faced one count each of assault with a semiautomatic firearm and a felon carrying a concealed firearm in a vehicle. However, according to CBS Los Angeles, prosecutors dismissed the remaining charges as part of the plea deal.

As for White and Whaley, the D.A.’s office said they were also charged with one count each of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit robbery and second-degree robbery and that White faced an additional charge of assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury. NBC Los Angeles, citing Deputy District Attorney Michele Hanisee, reported White pleaded no contest to the second-degree robbery charge in August and was sentenced to four years in prison, with the remaining charges being dropped. In addition, City News Service noted Whaley pleaded no contest to the same charge days later and had his remaining charges dropped as well.

Furthermore, the D.A.’s office said alleged accomplices Harold White and Jennifer McBride were charged with one count each of accessory after the fact, with him also facing one count of possession of a firearm and her facing one count of receiving stolen property. Per Reuters, prosecutors said Harold White pleaded no contest to the weapon charge on Dec. 5 and will be sentenced next year. As for McBride, the news organization, citing the D.A.’s office, said her case remains pending. She previously pleaded not guilty.

In a recent Instagram post, Fischer re-shared the impact statement he said he provided in court Dec. 5.

“It’s hard to believe that it’s nearing 2 years since I was taking Asia, Koji, and Gustav out for an evening stroll when—in an instant—I suddenly found myself fighting with everything I had to protect those dogs from being stolen,” he wrote in part. “But it wasn’t enough: I was beaten, strangled, shot and left to die bleeding out on a sidewalk and gasping for my life. And Koji and Gustav were gone.” 

Despite everything he’s been through physically and mentally since the shooting, Fischer said he forgives Jackson “and everyone involved with the attack.”

“You completely altered my life,” he continued, “and I know I can’t fully move forward from the night you shot me until I said those words to you.”

E! News has reached out to the D.A’s office but has yet to hear back.

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family).

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