KKTV 11 News | Colorado Springs, Pueblo | News

Suspect In War Vet Shooting Pleads Not Guilty

Ruben Ray Juardo--AP

Ruben Ray Juardo--AP

The man charged with shooting an Afghanistan vet at his homecoming party has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder.

Ruben Ray Juardo, 19, remains in custody at the West Valley Detention Center in California on a $1 million bond. His arraignment, which lasted all of two minutes, was held Thursday.

Family members of Christopher Sullivan say the shooting on Dec. 23 shattered the 22-year-old Army Specialist's spine, leaving him paralyzed.

Sullivan was already in recovery from injuries--including brain damage and a cracked collarbone--sustained in a suicide bombing one year earlier, from which he received a Purple Heart. He's a member of the 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell, and had been recovering at the base before coming home to San Bernardino for the holidays.

Juardo's attorney, Michael J. Holmes, said that Juardo and Sullivan had been friends for years.

According to authorities, Juardo got in an argument with Sullivan's brother at the homecoming party, ultimately punching him. When Sullivan intervened, Juardo allegedly shot him multiple times, hitting Sullivan in the neck.

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