PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A Maine man is due to be sentenced for the first killing of a law enforcement officer in the line of duty in nearly 30 years.
The state is seeking the maximum life in prison when John Williams is sentenced Thursday for the fatal shooting of Cpl. Eugene “Gene” Cole last year in Norridgewock. The defense is seeking a 40-year sentence.
Cole’s killing prompted a massive manhunt with more than 200 law enforcement officers pouring into the area in central Maine, along with tactical vehicles and helicopters.
Prosecutors say Williams was angry over his girlfriend’s arrest and wanted to avoid going to jail himself when he shot Cole. The defense said Williams couldn’t form the intent to kill because he was sleep-deprived and strung out on cocaine and heroin.
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