U.S. Attorney's Office - Eastern Dist. of Wash.
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News Release
Man Who Attempted to Shoot and Kill A Spokane Police Officer Pleads Guilty To Federal Drug and Firearm Charges - 07/09/24

Spokane, Washington - Vanessa R. Waldref, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, announced today that Ray Anthony Wynecoop pleaded guilty on June 26, 2024, to one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Fentanyl, one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute 40 Grams or More of Fentanyl, one count of Discharge of a Firearm During and in Relation to a Drug Trafficking Crime, and one count of Felon in Possession of a Firearm. United States District Judge Mary K. Dimke accepted Wynecoop’s guilty plea and scheduled a sentencing hearing for September 25, 2024, in Spokane, Washington. 

In the plea agreement accepted by the court, and in information disclosed during court proceedings, Wynecoop was involved in two separate incidents.  First, on December 11, 2021, an officer with the Spokane Police Department (SPD) observed Wynecoop, who was driving a white Dodge Charger with no license plates, fail to use a turn signal. SPD attempted to conduct a traffic stop using the patrol car’s lights and siren. Instead of stopping, Wynecoop began driving erratically in attempt to elude SPD, including driving at excessive speeds on residential streets. SPD stopped following the vehicle when it became too dangerous. 

A short time later SPD located the Dodge Charger and observed that it had been involved in a crash. Wynecoop attempted to run from the scene but was arrested.

During a search of the Charger, law enforcement located a loaded 9mm pistol with a black laser mounted on the end of the barrel, a backpack with Wynecoop’s ID and two more lasers for the pistol. Officers also located a .380 semi-automatic pistol inside the vehicle, as well as a fanny pack that contained once ounce of heroin and fentanyl laced pills. 

The second incident occurred on June 26, 2022, when Wynecoop was armed with a .22 caliber pistol that had a loaded drum-style high-capacity magazine seated in the firearm. Wynecoop, along with another man, were involved in multiple drive-by shootings.  Based upon video evidence, they intentionally set out to locate a police officer and kill them. Wynecoop and his passenger began to follow a SPD officer and when a second officer came to their aid, Wynecoop opened fire, shooting the officer in the leg and the head. The other man with Wynecoop, videotaped it. The officer thankfully recovered from his injuries. 

During a search of the vehicle used by Wynecoop in the shooting, detectives located thousands of fentanyl pills, a small quantity of heroin, and other drug related items. 

On April 5, 2024, Wynecoop was sentenced in Washington State Court to more than 65 years in prison on multiple charges in connection to the shooting. The federal case was brought during the pendency of those state charges. 

“The violence in this case is shocking. Mr Wynecoop, a felon who was not allowed to possess firearms, went on a violent criminal spree that included a premeditated attempt to kill a police officer. His blatant disregard for the law and the safety of our community put all of us at incredible risk,” stated U.S. Attorney Waldref. “I am grateful for the brave men and women of law enforcement who place themselves in harm’s way every day to keep us safe from individuals taking dangerous actions like Mr. Wynecoop.”

“This case highlights the importance of our collaboration with federal, state, and local partners, including the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington, the Spokane Police Department, and the Spokane County Prosecutor’s Office, to find innovative solutions to take violent offenders off the street,” said Ron Deist, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, DEA Spokane District Office.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Spokane County Sheriff's Office, and the Spokane Police Department. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Stephanie Van Marter. 

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