Editor’s Note: This story is a corrected account of the Monday, November 20, sentencing of Brian Cooper.
ALAMOSA — With the charges dismissed earlier this fall related to his involvement in the 2016 Floyd Dale McBride homicide, Brian Cooper, 25, was sentenced on Monday to five years supervised probation on two felony cases, one involving a 2015 drug distribution case, and one involving menacing associated with a 2016 “bounty hunting” case.
On September 20, District Judge Michael Gonzales dismissed all charges against Cooper related to the McBride homicide. Cooper had been charged with felony accessory to a crime after the fact, tampering with evidence and conspiracy to commit murder after deliberation in connection with McBride’s death last summer. Those charges were dismissed upon recommendation of the district attorney’s office and Cooper’s attorneys because of his minimal part in McBride’s death. He was not present at the time of the shooting, to which his father pleaded guilty, and most of his charges related to his part in moving McBride’s body from one burial place to another following the homicide.
What Cooper was sentenced for this week was possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, dating to 2015, menacing and a misdemeanor third degree assault involving another inmate at the Alamosa County jail in September.
The menacing case related to a Sept. 9, 2016 incident in which Cooper and another defendant apprehended Ian Lucero at gunpoint, assaulted him, restrained him, hauled him around in the back of a truck for a while, threatened his life and finally delivered him to a bondsman.
Judge Gonzales sentenced Cooper to four years in the Department of Corrections on the drug distribution charge, with the sentence suspended and Cooper placed on supervised probation for four years. The judge also sentenced Cooper to five years in prison with the sentence suspended and Cooper placed on probation instead on the menacing charge. The sentences will run concurrently. Cooper has been in jail for 398 days and was given credit for time served.
The judge also required Brian Cooper to complete 300 hours of useful public service and told Cooper to go back to Colorado Springs to live with his mother.
The judge, prosecution, defense and Cooper’s mother, who spoke at his sentencing hearing, said they believed Cooper’s father Lonnie had not been a good influence on him. For the majority of his life Brian had lived with his mother but had come to the San Luis Valley to live with his father a few years ago.
“I know that if he’s given the opportunity, he will turn his life around,” his mother told the judge.