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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Timothy Lucious

Lesser verdict still means life for Lucious

A Spokane man faces life in prison under the state’s 3 strikes law after a jury convicted him in connection with a July 2009 shooting that injured two women.

 Jurors were split on attempted murder and first-degree assault charges against Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious by Spokane County prosecutors, citing questions over whether another man may have fired shots at the women.

But the jury foreman said all 12 believed Lucious had banged on the car window and threatened the women with a gun, justifying a second-degree assault conviction.

Superior Court Judge Annette Plese ordered Lucious, 39, held without bail until sentencing on Oct. 14.

Described as a gang member by Spokane police, Lucious already has convictions for two violent crimes.

Under state law, Thursday’s conviction earns him a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Public defender Steven Reich said prosecutors “grossly overcharged” Lucious and said while he’s pleased jurors wouldn’t convict on the murder charges, the outcome is the same for Lucious under the 3-strikes law.

“I have a real problem with the three-strikes law,” Reich said. “It takes discretion away from judges.”

Read the rest of my story here.

Past coverage:

Sept. 16: Lawyer: Shooting suspect may be wrongly accused

Sept. 14: Prosecution could rest today in 3-strikes trial

June 8: 3-strikes suspect backs out of pro-se plan

March 15: ‘Hardball’ means more charges for Lucious

Jan. 19: Attempted murder charges dropped against Gardner

July 24, 2009: Crosstown melee erupts in gunfire

Lawyer: Shooting suspect wrongly accused

A Spokane man facing life in prison for a July 2009 shooting may be wrongly accused, his lawyer told jurors during closing arguments Wednesday .

Police halted their investigation into the shooter’s identity after the alleged victims identified Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious (right) as the gunman, said public defender Steven Reich.

Nearly a year after the shooting, authorities learned that another man - possibly armed with a .45 handgun - was with the women. But the group had lied about Antonio E. Cook’s presence because his probation prohibited from being out after 10 p.m. and “they would have continued to lie had it not been discovered,” Reich said.

“They haven’t earned your trust,” Reich told jurors.

Reich suggested that Cook fired, likely on accident, the shots that injured Donna M. Dansby and Zsaja J. Branch.

Deputy Prosecutor Mark Cipolla said Reich may wish a .45 was present during the shooting, but the evidence just doesn’t support that claim.

Jurors are to continue deliberations this morning. Lucious is charged with six counts of attempted murder; first-degree assault is included as an alternative charge.

His defense focuses on what Reich said is a shaky case built on testimony from women who may be protecting the real shooter.

Though most witnesses said Cook (left) did not have a gun, one said he did, and Reich said it was likely the others were lying to protect Cook. He pointed to what Branch told doctors at the hospital - that she’d been shot with a .45.

“How would she know?” Reich said.

Police have said Lucious used a 9 mm handgun in the shooting.

Cipolla said in his rebuttal that if Branch had rally been shot in the chest with a .45 “she would have been split in half.”

Superior Court Judge Annette Plese sustained Reich’s objection because no experts ever testified about the impact of a .45.

Reich told jurors that Cook has been convicted of crimes that contest his character, including witness tampering and theft. He reminded jurors that Cook was forced to testify, despite Lucious allegedly trying to kill Branch, who is the mother of Cook’s daughter. He also pointed out that Cook fled the shooting scene despite Branch being rushed to a hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Cipolla said the facts of the case speak for themselves.

“This man right here used a gun on a car full of women for no apparent reason,” Cipolla said.

The jury deliberated for about an hour Wednesday afternoon and will be back at the courthouse at 9 a.m. today.

If convicted of attempted murder or the lesser charge, first-degree assault, Lucious will be sentenced to life in prison without parole because he already has two violent crime convictions.

Jurors are not allowed to know his possible punishment, but Reich emphasized that “any decision you make will have a a longstanding impact on Mr. Lucious.”

A codefendant, Michael R. Gardner, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in January and was credited for time served.

Past coverage:

Sept. 14: Shooting proceeded fight w/ heeled shoes, butcher knife

State could rest today in 3-strikes trial

Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor Mark Cipolla expects to wrap up his case against Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious today after testimony from four or five witnesses, including a man authorities apparently didn’t know was connected to the July 2009 shooting until a few months ago. 

Antonio E. Cook, Jr., 29, (left) was with a group of women when they drove to meet another group for a fight early July 24 to settle a dispute that began at a north side bar. Two of the women testified Monday that they’d brought Cook along for “protection” during the fight.

But the women hadn’t told investigators about Cook until long after Lucious’ arrest, according to court testimony. Lucious’ lawyer, Steve Reich, said repeatedly that Cook was known to carry a .45 handgun.

Lucious, who already has two convictions for violent crimes under the state’s three strikes law, faces six counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of drive-by shooting for the shooting on July 24, 2009. First-degree assault is listed as an alternative charge. The trial opened Monday before a jury of eight women and five men (one juror is an alternate). As is customary, jurors are not allowed to know Lucious’ possible punishment.

Lucious (right, in 2009) wore black slacks, black shoes and a white pine striped shirt with buzzed hair and a beard and mustache.

Witnesses included alleged attempted-murder victim, 18-year-old Ebony Branch, who said she didn’t tell police about Cook, the father of her sister’s baby, because Cook was prohibited from being out after 10 p.m. by the state Department of Corrections.

Reich said Branch didn’t tell him that during an interview in March, either.

Branch said she didn’t tell investigators until “a couple of months ago” but denied conspiring with the other women to hide Cook’s involvement.

Testimony from Branch and another alleged victim, Donna M. Dansby, portrayed a wild fight between several women that led to a showdown in a park on the lower South Hill, near 7th and Newark.

Dansby testified that she removed her heeled shoes and used them as weapons while charging a woman who later grabbed a butcher knife after spitting a razor blade from her mouth. Dansby and her friends then traveled from the bar to an after party, where they met the women again and agreed to meet at the park for a fight.

When they arrived at the park, Lucious was there with a gun, Branch said. Lucious fired several shots at the car as they drove away, Branch testified, then was still there with the gun when they realized they’d forgotten Zsaja J. Branch, Ebony’s older sister.

They turned around to picked her up, and Zsaja was shot by Lucious as she ran to the car, Ebony Branch testified.

Branch was shot in the chest and survived, though police initially considered the wound life threatening, according to court documents. Dansby was shot in the arm during the melee but testified that she doesn’t remember how it happened.

Testimony is scheduled to resume today at 9:15 after Cook, also a witness in the John S. Williams murder case, is sentenced in a separate case.

Gang member’s 3-strikes trial begins today

A Spokane gang member facing life in prison for a shooting that injured two women in July 2009 is to stand trial this week in Superior Court. 

Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious, who already has two convictions for violent crimes under the state’s three-strikes law, faces six counts of attempted murder for the shooting on July 24, 2009. First-degree assault is listed as an alternative charge.

Spokane County Deputy mark Cipolla filed four additional attempted-murder charges against Lucious in February after the suspect turned down a plea deal, according to court documents. (Details on the proposed deal are not available.)

Lucious now stands accused of attempting to murder Donna M. Dansby, Zsaja J. Branch, Marquetta M. Scales, Summer R. Abrahamson, Amber C. Branch and Ebony V. Branch. Zsaja Branch suffered a gunshot wound to her chest, Dansby was shot in her left arm.

The melee began when the women were at the now closed Lefty’s Steak and Sports and a woman “was yelling to Dansby something about Spokane girls all being bitches,” then continued to the area of 7th and Newark, when Lucious allegedly showed up with a gun, according to court documents. A co-defendant, Michael R. Gardner, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault for his role in the incident.

A jury of 12 Spokane County resident was to be selected by Friday. Opening statements are to begin this morning.

A judge allowed Lucious to act as his own lawyer in May, but he changed his mind a couple weeks later and Steve Reich was reappointed. Lucious’ Aug. 10 request for a new public defender was denied.

Superior Court Judge Annette Plese is presiding over the trial.

Past coverage:

March 15: ‘Hardball’ means more charges for gang member

3-strikes suspect backs out of pro se plan

Here’s one to cross off your list of upcoming spectacles: the Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious attempted-murder trial.

Lucious, who faces life in prison under the three-strikes law, recently backed out on a plan to act as his own attorney after representing himself for about two weeks.

Lucious’ pro se request was approved May 20 after he described himself as “the only one with an undivided loyalty to the defense of these charges.”

Superior Court Judge Ellen Kalama Clark reappointed Lucious’ his public defender, Steven Reich, on Friday at Lucious’s request, and the trial was pushed back from June 24 to Aug. 2 to allow Reich to make up for lost time.

Lucious, 39, is charged with six counts of attempted murder for a a July 24 shooting that injured two women after a cross-town melee.

Gangster will act as his own lawyer at trial

A Spokane gangster facing life in prison for a shooting last summer is now representing himself.

Timothy L. “Stoney Boy” Lucious, 39, (right) will act as his own lawyer at his trial, which is set to begin June 24.

Lucious is charged with six counts of attempted first-degree murder for a July 24 shooting that injured two women after a cross-town melee.

“I am the only one in my case who cares enough about justice to go to the levels that need to be gone to, to show my innocence,” Lucious wrote in a motion filed May 17. “…It is my belief that I am the only one with an undivided loyalty to the defense of these charges.”

Superior Court Judge Ellen Kalama Clark approved Lucious’s request this morning and ordered Lucious’ public defender, Steven Reich, to provide his case materials.

Clark rejected Lucious’ request to push back his trial and re-interview witnesses, but Lucious was to participate in two new witness interviews with Deputy Prosecutor Mark Cipolla after the hearing.

The convicted felon faces life in prison under Washington’s three-strikes law.

Past coverage:

March 15: ‘Hardball’ means more charges for gangster

Jan. 19: Attempted murder charges dropped

July 24: Two women shot in crosstown melee

Witness in 2 gang crimes sought by police

A witness in criminal cases against two reputed Spokane gangsters hasn’t been staying in contact with court officials, and Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help arrest her.

Summer R. Abrahamson, 32, is to testify in the upcoming attempted-murder trial of Timothy Lucious, who faces life in prison under the three-strikes law for a shooting last summer.

Abrahamson also is the alleged victim in a first-degree robbery and second-degree assault case against Antono E. Cook, Jr., 29.

Cook is accused of punching Abrahamson and stealing a knife Sept. 6 in a fight over a sexually suggestive text message, according to court documents. Cook also is charged with illegally possessing the gun used in the Jan 17 murder of John S. Williams.

In Lucious’s case, Abrahamson was with a group of women when a fight that began at a bar festered at a party, then erupted on the other side of the city with two women shot and another punched unconscious. Lucious is the alleged shooter.

Prosecutors want Abrahamson jailed to assure her presence at trial.

“Based on her numerous unfavorable contacts with law enforcement and the courts, it is doubtful she would voluntarily appear for trial,” according to court documents.

Abrahamson has previous convictions for robbery, drugs, assault and malicious mischief.

A $100,000 material witness warrant was issued April 23. Crime Stoppers offered a reward for tips on her location this week.

Anyone with information is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS, or submit tips online here.

‘Hardball’ means more charges for gangster

A reputed Spokane gang member facing life in prison for a shooting last summer faces four additional counts of attempted first-degree murder after turning down a plea deal.

Timothy L. “Stoney Boy” Lucious, 39, faces a life sentence under Washington’s three-strikes law. He’s been in jail since October on two counts of first-degree attempted murder (alternate charges of first-degree assault are offered) and one count of second-degree assault for a shooting July 24.

Those charges were amended last week to add four additional counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of drive-by shooting after Lucious rejected a plea deal, according to documents prepared by Deputy Prosecutor Mark Cipolla. Details of that plea deal were not available.

Cipoilla explained his decision in court documents: A prosecutor offering “hardball choices to a defendant does not make the process constitutionally unfair, so long as the choices are realistically based upon evidence and options are known to both sides,” he wrote. Police found additional witnesses to the shooting that enabled prosecutors to file the additional charges.

Another man charged in the July incident, Michael “Mikey Mike” Gardner, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in January and was released from jail. He returned a couple weeks later after being arrested in a new assault arrested in a new assault case.

Past coverage:

Attempted murder charges dropped

Two women shot in crosstown melee

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