Judge Won’t Reject Statements by Suspect in Trooper Assault
RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — A judge has refused to throw out statements allegedly made to authorities by a Washington state man accused of trying to kill a Highway Patrol trooper in South Dakota.
The Rapid City Journal reports that attorneys for 34-year-old Donald Willingham, of Renton, Washington, unsuccessfully argued that the statements were obtained illegally.
Willingham has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder and other charges in the October 2015 beating of Trooper Zachary Bader during an Interstate 90 traffic stop east of Rapid City. Bader recovered from skull and facial fractures.
Authorities say the traffic stop led to the recovery of more than 50 pounds of marijuana, $33,000 in cash and a handgun.
Three others charged with being accessories in the case have pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against Willingham.