Centralia police search for New Year’s Day shooting suspect

James StaplesCENTRALIA — Centralia police are searching for a 43-year-old man in connection with a shooting New Years Day at Arizona Joe’s.

Police received the call about a shooting  just after 2 a.m. on New Year’s Day, in the parking lot of Arizona Joe’s, which is in the 1400 block of South Hickory in Centralia.

Reports say James Staples shot 32-year-old Sergio Salter in the neck with a small revolver that has not been recovered. Salter was taken by others who were with him by private vehicle to St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital in Centralia.

Centralia Police Detective Capt. Richard Densmore reports Salter was released from the hospital later in the day Thursday, after medical staff decided to leave the bullet in place, rather than operate on Salter and remove it.

Staples is due in Marion County court next week for a final pre-trial hearing before a January 20 jury trial on an unrelated 2013 case in which he is charged with felony aggravated battery of a police officer and felony possession of between 15 and 100 grams of cocaine, as well as misdemeanor resisting a peace officer.

Court records give Staples last known address as being in Chicago. Police say Staples is known to travel back and forth between Chicago and Centralia.