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Sirens & Gavels

Fri., July 2, 2010, noon

Accomplice in fatal stabbing jailed again

A teenager who blamed his methamphetamine addiction for his role in a fatal stabbing last year returned to jail Thursday on suspicion of drug possession and vehicle prowling.

Police say Christopher E. Hooper, 19, lied to police about his identity but granted them permission to search his backpack, where they found a prescription pill bottle with his true name, according to an affidavit filed in Superior Court.

Police had been paroling the area of North Martin Street and East Rich Avenue about 2 a.m. Thursday after a rash of vehicle prowlings when they spotted Hooper dressed in dark clothing "ducking behind cars when the patrol car approached," according to the affidavit. He first told police his name was Chris E. Collins "and removed shaved keys and a mini flashlight from his pants pockets in an attempt to prove he was not lying about his name."

Police found prescription drugs, along with rubber gloves, cell phones "and other vehicle prowling items" in Hooper's backpack, according to the affidavit.

He was booked only on a charge of possession of a controlled substance and was released on his own recognizance by Judge Michael Price. Hooper left jail about 3 a.m. today, records show.

Hooper already is on probation after pleading guilty to second-degree assault in April in connection with the January 2009 murder of Shannon A. Cochran.

Hooper said he was high on methamphetamine when he handed Michael L. Summa the knife that Summa used to kill Cochran. Hooper was sentenced on April 22 to a year in jail but credited for about 10 months already served.

Summa pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter in May and was sentenced to nearly eight years in prison with credit for 562 days served in jail.

An accomplice, Tylor T. Buttolph, 19; was sentenced to five years in prison last month after pleading guilty to second-degree manslaughter.

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