KELSO MAN SENTENCED TO TEN YEARS IN PRISON FOR BEATING UP A FEDERAL WITNESS
Beating in Retaliation for Cooperating with Law Enforcement
STACY CHARLES COMER, 38, of Kelso, Washington, was sentenced Friday, September 14, 2007, in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to ten years in prison and five years of supervised release for Conspiracy to Retaliate Against a Federal Witness, Retaliation Against a Federal Witness, and Brandishing a Firearm in Furtherance of a Crime of Violence. COMER was convicted by a jury on June 29, 2006, following a three day trial in front of U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton.
According to testimony at trial, COMER was angry at another man for cooperating with local police in a drug investigation which evolved into a federal prosecution. In August 2005, at COMER’S instigation, a co-defendant forced the victim from his home at gunpoint and made him go to the rooming house in Kelso where COMER resided. The co-defendant pushed the victim down the stairs to COMER’S basement rooms and put the gun in the victim’s mouth. COMER and another co-defendent then beat up the defendant for being a “snitch.” Both co-defendants testified for the prosecution at trial and the jury returned guilty verdicts after deliberating just three hours.
COMER has prior convictions for Fourth Degree Assaults involving domestic violence against women (1996 and 2003), Theft in the Second Degree (2002), and Intimidating a Witness (2003).
When pronouncing sentence, Judge Leighton told COMER the experience was “terrifying” for the victim and that, “What you did was unforgivable.” COMER blamed his conduct on drug and alcohol abuse, expressed regret for the incident, and wished he could personally apologize to the victim.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) and the Longview Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Karyn Johnson and William H. Redkey, Jr.
For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110.