Local news

Witness refuses to testify

A man was sentenced to 22 months in prison Tuesday after reneging on his promise to testify in two shootings.

Antonio E. Cook Jr., 29, previously pleaded guilty to third-degree assault and witness tampering in cases unrelated to the two shootings. However, Deputy Spokane County Prosecutor Mark Cipolla agreed to drop those charges in exchange for testimony in the cases, one of which resulted in murder charges.

Cook was a witness to a July 2009 shooting that injured two women. In the other case, John S. “Q” Williams was shot to death on Jan. 17, 2010. Edward “TD” Thomas, 25, and six other people have been charged in connection with the case, which was helped by Cook’s statements to police.

Cook has since refused to testify, Cipolla said, so charges from the unrelated matters were reinstated.

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