A Fulton, Illinois, man remained in the Clinton County Jail Monday after police say he fired three shots into the home of a Clinton woman.

Merle Dean Stage, 56, last known address in the 1600 block of Ebson Road, was charged Friday with attempted murder, intimidation with a dangerous weapon and possession of a firearm by a felon.

At 10:37 p.m. Jan. 29, Clinton police officers were dispatched to the 400 block of 7th Avenue South.

The woman showed officers text messages she had received from Stage that threatened to hurt her and kill her, according to an arrest affidavit.

She told police she was lying on her bed when she heard three shots and saw debris falling from the walls. An officer found a bullet in the wall above the woman’s bed and another on the floor, two holes in the wall where the bullets entered the home, and two used 9mm casings and a cigarette butt on top of the snow in an alley outside the apartment.

A neighbor told officers she heard two explosions and saw a black 1965 Chevy Impala when she looked out her window. She said she has seen Stage at the building in that car in the past.

In a follow-up interview, the woman told police Stage threatened her in messages and threatened to shoot her during a phone conversation. He also left threats to kill her in voicemails, which she played for the officer.

In one, Stage said, "I'm gonna kill you, you don't have a prayer in the world."

The woman said on the night of the shooting, Stage wanted to come by, and she told him not to. She said she was not feeling well and was going to lie down. Twenty-five minutes later, the woman heard a car go by slowly and heard three shots.

She heard Stage yell “you f****** whore” after the shots were fired.

The woman said she knows Stage has two handguns and a rifle. He is a convicted felon, prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm.

Attempted murder is a Class B felony punishable by up to 25 years in prison. Intimidation with a dangerous weapon is a Class C felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Possession of a firearm by a felon is a Class B felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

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