Road rage that escalated to a shootout last year in Tacoma led to a prison sentence for one man this week.
Christopher Nathaniel Jones, 36, pleaded guilty last month to multiple charges as part of negotiations with Pierce County prosecutors.
On Wednesday, Superior Court Judge John Hickman sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
Charging papers give this account of the June 23, 2016, shootout:
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A driver headed west on South 21st Street, near South I Street, saw that a car ahead of him was stopped. Jones eventually was identified as a passenger in the stopped car, and his wife, Maria Danielle Jones, 35, as the driver.
As the other driver tried to go around them, the Jones’ car accelerated. Christopher Jones then pointed what looked like a pistol out the window at the other driver, who told him to stop it.
Maria Jones yelled: “It’s just a BB gun, go around us.”
The other driver decided not to, and he and Christopher Jones got out of their cars and shots were fired.
In a statement to the court last month, Deputy Prosecutor Terry Lane wrote there was a “significant issue as to who fired the first shot.”
The other driver told police Jones fired a handgun at him, and he fired back and the Joneses drove off. He said he grabbed a second gun from his car, in case they came back.
They did. This time Christopher Jones was firing from the sunroof, as the other driver fired back.
When police caught up with the vehicles, both had bullet holes.
The Joneses were arrested, and about 200 sedative pills were found in their car.
Ultimately, Christopher Jones pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree assault, unlawful drug possession, unlawful gun possession, felony harassment and third-degree assault.
Maria Jones pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree assault. She was sentenced to four years last month by former Judge Katherine Stolz, who was filling in on a temporary basis.