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Second defendant in Fargo apartment shooting pleads guilty

Oliver Tye could face up to 10 years in prison for each charge in connection to the shooting that injured a woman.

A man in an orange jumpsuit rests his forehead against his hands.
Oliver Tye appears at a change of plea hearing Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022, in East Central District Court on amended charges for shooting toward others Jan. 24, 2021, at the Arbors apartment building in Fargo.
Michael Vosburg / The Forum
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FARGO — A Fargo man involved in a shootout that injured a woman last year at an apartment complex has pleaded guilty.

Oliver Tye, 22, pleaded guilty Thursday, Aug. 11, in Cass County District Court to aggravated assault and reckless endangerment, both Class C felonies. Per a plea agreement, Judge John Irby dismissed an attempted murder charge against Tye and downgraded the assault charge from a Class B felony.

The charges stem from a Jan. 24, 2021, shooting at The Arbors apartment complex, 718 23rd St. S. Prosecutors said Jerome Wesseh Koon Jr.; his sister, Doris Koon; and Opheliah Quiah tried to break into Tye’s apartment and shouted threats at the defendant. At one point, Jerome Koon pulled out an AR-style rifle from Quiah’s duffle bag and stuck the barrel of the gun under Tye’s door, according to a Fargo Police detective.

JEROME KOON.JPG
Jerome Koon

The group left the apartment without getting into the unit, prosecutor Joshua Traiser said. Tye yelled out his window at the group, the attorney said.

As they exchanged insults, Tye grabbed a handgun and jumped out the window, Traiser said. The group and Tye continued to yell at each other until Jerome Koon turned to leave, the prosecutor said.

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That’s when Tye fired his weapon and hit Quiah three times, according to police. Jerome Koon returned fire but didn’t injure anyone, police said.

Jerome Koon took Quiah to a hospital, and she survived. He was arrested shortly after the shooting.

Tye was arrested almost a month later.

The downgraded charge acknowledges Tye shot toward the general area of Quiah but did not intend to injure her. He could face the penalty associated with a Class B felony — 10 years in prison for each charge — if Irby rules he is a dangerous special offender. Since Tye has two felonies on his record and used a weapon in the Arbors apartment shooting, he could qualify.

The charges also carry a minimum of four years in prison since a weapon was used.

If Tye is not found to be a dangerous special offender, he will be sentenced to serve between two and five years in prison for each charge.

Since Tye is not a U.S. citizen, he faces deportation, his attorney Nick Thornton said.

A jury acquitted Jerome Koon on attempted murder and theft charges but found him guilty of reckless endangerment, tampering with evidence, unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon and terrorizing. He was sentenced in January to two years in prison.

April Baumgarten joined The Forum in February 2019 as an investigative reporter. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, N.D., where her family raises Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at the University of Jamestown, N.D.
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