News and Press Releases

One of Four Men who Attacked Couple with Baseball Bat and Club after Failed Drug Deal

May 1, 2008

FRANKIE R. COOLEY, JR., 24, an enrolled member of Tlingit Tribe, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma, to 33 months in prison and three years of supervised release for Assault With a Dangerous Weapon. Late at night on October 5, 2006, COOLEY joined with three other men in the assault on a couple in their home on the Lower Elwha Indian Reservation. The four men had gone to the home to buy marijuana, got into an argument with the couple, and returned with a baseball bat and club and beat the man and his wife. Both suffered serious injuries. At sentencing U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton said to COOLEY, “your criminal history is amazing.... You have been very busy causing problems for people.... Your history is both sad and frightening.”

Prosecutors sought the longest sentence for COOLEY because of his lengthy criminal history. COOLEY has two previous convictions for assault. The first in Chelan County in 2004, was for punching a stranger in the face at a Leavenworth gas station. The second, in 2007 in Clallam County, was for assaulting his then girlfriend near Neah Bay. Between 1997 and 2000, COOLEY had nine juvenile convictions ranging from several counts of stealing cars, to vehicular assault, eluding police, possession of marijuana, and unlawful display of a weapon. In fact, COOLEY was banned from the Makah Indian Reservation by the tribal court in 2005, for a litany of convictions including possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, assault first degree (a knife stabbing), criminal mischief, intoxication and trespass, assault third degree, and complicity with assault in the first degree.

Daniel Markishtum, 25, pleaded guilty March 30, 2007, to the assault as well, and was sentenced in December 2007, to 22 months in prison. Markishtum, an enrolled Makah, had fewer prior criminal convictions than COOLEY. Two non-tribal members, Bradford Johnston, 19, and Thomas Wilson, 20, had little or no criminal history and were sentenced in Clallam County Superior Court to 6 months in jail for residential burglary and fourth degree assault.

The case was investigated by the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office and the FBI.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Gregory A. Gruber.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110.

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