Plea bargain reached in shooting of state trooper

Trial notes taken by another defendant have led to a plea bargain agreement involving the last person still being prosecuted in connection with the shooting of state trooper Brian Koch two years ago near Silt.

Cori Graham is scheduled to be sentenced Friday after a plea deal reached in October.

Graham agreed to plead guilty to one felony count of being an accessory to attempted first-degree murder in exchange for prosecutors not seeking any prison sentence, said Graham’s attorney, Walt Brown.

He said prosecutors agreed to the deal after seeing trial notes taken by Nicole Brownell, who was convicted in May on two counts of being an accessory to attempted first-degree murder.

Authorities said Steven Appl shot Koch during a traffic stop on Oct. 24, 2006, then shot and killed himself the next day at a police checkpoint while hiding in a vehicle Graham was driving.

They said Brownell let Appl stay at her residence in the Silt area and arranged to have Graham drive him away in an attempt to escape.

In the discovered notes, Brownell wrote that she never told Graham that Appl was at Brownell’s home following Koch’s shooting, Brown said.

“(Graham) was up there and basically trapped in that situation because Nicole took her up there and didn’t tell her Appl was there,” Brown said.

The Ninth Judicial District Attorney’s Office did not return calls for comment.

Graham had been scheduled to go on trial this month. Brown said Brownell refused to testify on her behalf. Graham agreed to the plea bargain because she didn’t want to risk losing at trial and going to prison, Brown said. Instead, she will be put on probation, he said.

“She’s got four kids and she wants to attend to her four kids, that’s the big thing,” Brown said.


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