April 17, 2013 in Idaho

Cocolalla man gets life term for 2011 slaying

Associated Press

SANDPOINT - A North Idaho man has been sentenced to life in prison in the 2011 shooting death of a romantic rival.

First District Judge Barbara Buchanan sentenced 20-year-old Austin Blake Thrasher of Cocolalla Tuesday.

The Bonner County Daily Bee reports the judge ordered Thrasher to serve at least 25 years before becoming eligible for parole in the slaying of 19-year-old Michael Wyatt Smith.

Detectives said Thrasher resorted to violence after learning he and Smith were dating the same 16-year-old Clark Fork girl. Bonner County Prosecutor Louis Marshall said Tuesday the slaying was committed out of jealousy and with premeditation.

Smith was initially reported missing and his killing was undetected until early 2012 when Thrasher’s wife — arrested for a separate crime — then told police where the body was buried

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