RACINE — A man charged in December with attempted homicide following a shooting pleaded guilty to a single charge in Racine County Circuit Court on Friday.
Christopher Cosey, 24, was originally charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide and three counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety with use of a deadly weapon for shooting a man during a fight.
He pleaded guilty to the single charge of possession of a firearm by a felon.
Antoinette Rich, assistant district attorney, said inconsistent witness statements led her to conclude she did not have the evidence to support the more serious charges.
She said if she took the case to trial, “I don’t believe I would prevail.”
The jury trial scheduled for Tuesday came off the court calendar.
Defendant will do some prison time
Cosey was sentenced to serve four years in prison followed by four years of extended supervision. He agreed to pay $16,000 in restitution toward the shooting victim’s hospital bills.
The defendant said he regretted his actions because he was not able to be present for his daughter like he should be.
“I learned a very valuable lesson to abide by the law, so I won’t ever be incarcerated again,” he said.
Judge Timothy Boyle pointed out that if not for the gun, the dispute between Cosey and the victim would have been merely a fight.
People come to court, he continued, and say they are “packing heat because they feel they need it for defense, and that’s the really sad state of things in the community.”
Case history: argument leads to shooting
The Racine Police Department was dispatched on Dec. 21, 2022, on the report a man had been shot multiple times.
The victim was taken by Flight for Life to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa with serious injuries.
According to the criminal complaint, Cosey was visiting his child when an argument started with the child’s mother. The woman’s younger sister became concerned and called family members for help.
Two men arrived, one of whom was the victim. The criminal complaint states during a dispute with the men, Cosey pulled a gun and began shooting.
Cosey fled the house, dropping the gun in the front yard as he went. He turned himself into the police on Dec. 31.
Victim may have started the physical altercation
Attorney Pat Cafferty, who represented the defendant, objected to the language in the criminal complaint.
Rich acknowledged the original statements of witnesses were problematic.
“Originally when this case was charged, I charged this case, there were differing statements from people as to what to took place,” Rich said.
She said she believed the defendant had a gun but “did not display a gun at anyone.”
Rich acknowledged the victim hit Cosey, a fight ensued, the two fought over the gun, and during the struggle, the victim was shot multiple times.
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