A Cherokee County man is expected to recover after being shot in the chest Tuesday night by his girlfriend.

William Patrick Potts, 44, was taken to Tahlequah City Hospital for treatment after being shot once in the left side of the chest.

Sheriff’s deputies had been looking for his girlfriend, Pamela Ann Riddle, to question her about the shooting. They found Riddle, 49, Wednesday morning after she allegedly tried to harm herself by cutting her wrists.

Sheriff’s Deputy Wes Hahn’s report states Potts told authorities at the hospital he had been sleeping in his van when two men approached in a vehicle. He said one of the men fought with him and knocked him to the ground. Potts said he was kicked and heard a gunshot, and realized he’d been shot in the chest.

Potts went to Coy and Kim Barnes’ house and asked them to take him to the hospital. Deputies later spoke with the Barneses, who said Potts had told them the gun “fell” and shot him.

Chief Investigator Jason Chennault said he instructed deputies Tuesday night to check the van and try to find Riddle to ask her about the shooting. He and Reserve Deputy Steve Hamby went to Riddle’s home Wednesday morning and saw blood on the porch.

“It looked like someone was bleeding going into or out of the house,” Chennault said. “We checked around the house and saw more blood near the front of the house.”

Chennault said he and Hamby entered Riddle’s home to check her welfare, and found Riddle kneeling between the toilet and a walk-in shower. They also saw she had blood on her hands. Chennault said he attempted to get Riddle to speak to him, and he called an ambulance.

Chennault later saw she was holding a razor blade in her hand and had cuts on her wrists. He was able to get Riddle to drop the blade, and he and Hamby helped her to a bed.

Roger Fine, of the Peggs Fire Department, was a first responder to the scene and provided medical attention until the ambulance arrived. Chennault said Riddle walked to the ambulance.

Riddle allegedly told deputies she and Potts argued Tuesday night and she tried to leave in the van, but he would not let her take his van. He then got in the van and Riddle allegedly retrieved a .22-caliber rifle and shot Potts.

Potts initially told deputies he was robbed, but changed his story when he learned Riddle admitted the shooting.

A report is being prepared for submission to the district attorney’s office to determine whether charges will be filed. Riddle and Potts both have prior records. No arrests have been made in connection with the shooting.


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