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Tuesday, June 2, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

Stabbing victim died standing up for friend

Shannon Cochran died defending a friend, police say.

When a group of five teenagers told him they planned to pummel Ricky Edmonds over a $300 drug debt, Cochran, 22, told them, “If you have a beef with Ricky, you have a beef with me,” according to an arrest document for one of the young men accused in Cochran’s killing.

A stab wound to the heart killed Cochran on Friday. Doctors told police he suffered eight stab wounds inflicted by a steak knife.

Michael Summa, 19, is in Spokane County Jail on a $750,000 bond, charged with second-degree murder. Two others – Tylor Buttolph and Chris Hooper, both 18 – are wanted in connection with Cochran’s death and remained at large Tuesday.

Police said Cochran had just returned home – next door to Edmonds’ – from a bar when the incident began about 2:20 a.m. Friday. According to Spokane police Sgt. Joe Peterson, the teens were pounding on Edmonds’ door in the 1600 block of East Garland Avenue, but he didn’t answer. Cochran, standing outside, heard them and got involved.

Edmonds’ parents told police Buttolph had been harassing their son, according to the arrest document.

After the fight, the group fled while placing a call to Buttolph’s father, Danny Wood Sr., who picked them up in a car. As the group climbed into Wood’s vehicle, Buttolph asked Summa “why he stabbed Shannon Cochran so many times,” according to the arrest document.

As Wood drove the group from the scene, the suspects threw the knife from the car, Peterson said.

Wood “offered his son an alibi, saying he’d been there the whole night,” Peterson said.

Wood was being held in Spokane County Jail on suspicion of first-degree rendering criminal assistance, according to an inmate roster.

Buttolph and Hooper had extensive criminal histories, authorities said.

Meanwhile, those close to Cochran are mourning his death.

“Shannon was a genuinely good person and he was loved by many,” Crystal Runions, a family friend, wrote in an e-mail. “All I can say is that we loved him a lot, and he is going to be missed by a good majority of the younger people in this town.”

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