Judge sentences Vidor landlord for shooting death of tenant

Published 12:08 am Friday, October 21, 2022

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ORANGE — A Vidor landlord found guilty of shooting and killing his tenant was sentenced by Orange County 163rd District Court Judge Rex Peveto.

After being found guilty of the manslaughter charge in August, James McClelland, 74, opted for the judge to sentence him.

On Wednesday the punishment was handed down — 12 years in prison, according to information from the court.

Manslaughter carries a sentence of up to 20 years.

In January 2017, McClelland and his tenant, Chris Nicolasora, 38, got into a dispute that ended in gunfire.

Nicolasora was struck, ran from the residence and collapsed in the front yard of the home in the 1300 block of First Street.

A Vidor Police Department officer was patrolling at approximately 9:25 p.m. on the day of the shooting in the 1300 block of First Street. The officer heard a shot fired in his vicinity.

The officer observed a male victim collapse in the front yard clutching his chest and immediately called for additional units to respond.

Officers quickly arrived on-scene, secured the area and began to call for the occupants to exit the residence through the front door.

McClelland appeared in the doorway and exited the residence without incident.

During the investigation, it was learned Nicolasora and McClelland had a landlord-tenant relationship.

Nicolasora was declared dead on scene by Acadian Ambulance Service medics.

McClelland was later arrested.

— Written by Mary Meaux