Grand jury indicts Esopus man for attempted murder of a police officer

The Ulster County Grand Jury today reported an indictment of Clayton Shafer of Esopus for Attempted Murder of a Police Officer, a class A-1 felony, and several other charges.

The Ulster County Sheriff’s Office reported receiving emergency calls from acquaintances on February 9 to check on Clayton Shafer’s welfare in his RV located in his business premises a short distance from Robert Graves school on Mountain View Avenue in Esopus.

According to the District Attorney’s Office, when the deputy sheriff responding to the emergency turned into the driveway, Shafer confronted him with a loaded AR-15, pointed the weapon directly at the deputy and attempted to shoot. “As a result of the extraordinary courage, skill and evasive training of the responding deputy, no lives were lost and passing motorists were protected” said District Attorney David Clegg.


The road was closed down to traffic while law enforcement dealt with the 52-year-old Shafer until he was eventually taken into custody without any injuries to anyone.

Shafer is expected to be arraigned in-person in Ulster County Court within a few days. He is presumed to be innocent of the charges in the indictment until and unless the DA’s Office overcomes that presumption in court.