County Attorney doesn't believe Diamond Morrill fired shots at police

LACONIA — Belknap County Attorney Melissa Guldbrandsen said yesterday her office didn't prosecute the young woman charged with firing three shots from a Belmont home in the direction of three separate police officers because doesn't think the woman did it.

Guldbrandsen said Diamond Morrill, now 23, was likely under the influence of an male adult in the home who was tried in 2011for criminal restraint and unlawful possession of a gun.

Morrill pleaded no contest in court Monday to one count of endangering the welfare of a child for firing a gun while a child was in the house and one count of resisting arrest. Judge Kenneth McHugh found her guilty.

"I know she said she did (fire a gun)," Guldbransen said, adding Morrill also said she slept through the whole incident, which involved police talking on bullhorns and emergency lights flashing for hours. "Who could sleep through that?"

Morrill was given two 2-to-4 year sentences in prison all suspended on good behavior. The charges can be brought forward within seven years and she is on probation for two years.

Morrill was one of three adults inside a home on 697 Union Road on September 3, 2010 when members of the Joint Belknap County U.S. Marshall's Team came to arrest Christopher Kelly on a outstanding warrant just before 11 p.m.

He was convicted of resisting arrest however a judge refused to allow the most serious charges — criminal restraint and being a felon in possession of a handgun — to go forward.

The ensuing standoff lasted about seven hours and around 3 a.m. three shots were fired from a handgun. The three rounds came close to three separate police officers who were members of the Belknap County Special Operations Group who had surrounded the home to see if they could convince Kelly and Morrill, who had Kelly's girlfriend's daughter in the home with them, to surrender.

Each of the three officers testified at Kelly's trial that they heard the bullets come through the leaves. Two testified the bullets narrowly missed them and they had heard the rounds go past them. None of them could say who fired the gun.

Once daylight broke, Kelly and the little girl came out of the house and Morrill was found wrapped in a blanket and asleep on a mattress in a barricaded back bedroom. The gun was found next to her in the bedroom but no ever testified that they say who fired it.

Although Guldbrandsen didn't mention them yesterday, court records said Morrill also had some mental and emotional issues and the court at one point had determined she was unfit to stand trial. This past April, she was deemed capable of understanding the charges and assisting her attorney.

At her sentencing on Monday, Morrill told McHugh she was taking her medication as prescribed and understood what was happening in court.