PARK COUNTY, Colo. – A former Adams County deputy who saw sexual assault charges brought by his ex-wife dropped last year now faces child abuse charges after one of his stepchildren was killed when a shotgun went off inside their home.
Jason Belmont, 45, faces investigation on child abuse resulting in death caused by negligence or recklessness and child abuse resulting in death with negligence charges, as well as six misdemeanor counts of child abuse without injury.
Belmont’s new wife, Stefanie Wray, also faces investigation on child abuse resulting in death charges.
The 2-year-old child was killed after being shot in the head when a shotgun being kept in a bathroom attached to the children’s playroom was knocked off a rack and went off.
A redacted affidavit for Belmont’s arrest says he showed up to a fire station on Nov. 13 to tell authorities a child had been shot at his Park County home, saying his cellphones were dead and that he couldn’t call 911.
Park County deputies who went to the home to investigate found the baby dead in the bathtub with the shotgun on the edge of the tub.
They said the entire house was filthy, and that there were walls and clothes smeared with feces, blood and urine throughout the house, where several other of Wray’s children also lived. There were also several makeshift “bedrooms” in the home’s basement made of plywood and unfinished, some of which had locks on the outside of the doors. Some of the children confirmed the “rooms” were their bedrooms.
The affidavit says that while the children were playing, several of them climbed up to look out of window in the bathroom, and one knocked the shotgun off a low-hanging towel rack.
The gun, which Belmont told officers he didn’t believe was loaded, went off, hitting the child in the head and killing him. Investigators say they found at least four other guns in the home as well.
Though the county coroner said the victim could not be identified to news media Tuesday because of the ongoing investigation, an obituary on the Dignity Memorial website names the child as John Paul Gaudreau III, saying he is survived by his “parents,” Jason and Stefanie.
Belmont was last in the news in March 2015, when the Arapahoe County District Attorney’s Office dismissed sexual assault charges brought forth against him by his ex-wife.
A warrant for Belmont’s arrest was issued by a Park County judge Monday, and Belmont was arrested by Chaffee County deputies Tuesday. His warrant carries a $50,000 bond.