Man involved in trooper standoff arraigned

The Soldotna man involved in an Aug. 21 standoff with Alaska State Troopers was arraigned in Superior Court Tuesday at Kenai Courthouse.

James M. Cook Sr., 42, faces 17 total charges.

Office of Public Advocacy assistant public advocate DinaMarie Cale was assigned as Cook’s attorney on Sept. 3. A representative for Cale telephonically entered pleas of not guilty for all counts against Cook.

Cook was arraigned on domestic violence charges in District Court Aug. 24. The charges include: two counts of assault in the first degree, one count of third-degree assault and kidnapping tampering with evidence, all felony counts, as well as a misdemeanor count of improper registration display.

Between Aug. 24 and the Superior Court arraignment, Cook was indicted on additional charges, some of which are from the standoff, including five counts of third-degree trooper assault. He was also charged with criminal mischief, sexual assault, coercion and three counts of weapons misconduct; all are felony charges.

According to an affidavit for the domestic violence charges filed by troopers, Cook’s former girlfriend told troopers on Aug. 13 Cook had threatened to kill her pointed a .40-caliber handgun at her face, punched her, kicked her and hit her with a 2-foot copper pipe. The alleged victim told troopers Cook bound and gagged her during that same incident and had assaulted her in the past. She was treated for her injuries at Central Peninsula Hospital.

The standoff started when Cook became uncooperative when troopers tried to serve him with an arrest warrant for the domestic violence charges at a Jones Street residence. Cook fired multiple shots during the about 6-hour long incident, and troopers did not fire any shots, according to troopers. Cook surrendered after troopers released canisters of non-harmful gas into the house. No one was injured during the standoff.

Cook is in custody at Wildwood Pretrial Facility.

His next court date is scheduled for Oct. 14.

Kaylee Osowski can be reached at kaylee.osowski@peninsulaclarion.com.

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