Monday, August 1, 2016
COEUR D’ALENE – Cruz Flechita Ramon Soto, 34, of Plummer, Idaho, pleaded guilty Friday to assault resulting in serious bodily injury and use of a firearm during a crime of violence, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Soto was indicted by a federal grand jury on November 17, 2015.
According to the plea agreement, in the early morning of November 12, 2015, while the victim, an Indian, was sleeping in the living room of a relative’s house, Soto, also an Indian, came to the house. Soto and the victim spoke for about 20 minutes then Soto shot the victim in the chest, back, and neck. The victim was flown to Kootenai Hospital where he was stabilized and flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. The victim was able to identify Soto as the shooter. The shooting occurred within the boundaries of the Coeur d’Alene Indian reservation.
The charge of assault resulting in serious bodily injury is punishable by up to ten years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000, and up to three years of supervised release and use of a firearm during a crime of violence is punishable by not less than ten years in prison to be served consecutive to any other sentence imposed.
Sentencing is set for October 11, 2016, before Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the federal courthouse in Coeur d'Alene.
The case was investigated by Coeur d’Alene Tribal Police, Benewah County Sheriff’s Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.