Gun dealer IDs murder weapon

Owner of Rayco Sales verifies .22-caliber rifle was from his store

Posted: Friday, May 11, 2007

A gun dealer who showed an alleged murder weapon to Jason Coday identified the sawed-off .22-caliber rifle in court Thursday.

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Raymond Coxe, owner of Rayco Sales, said he discussed the various aspects of two .22-caliber rifles with Coday last year shortly before the killing of Simone Kim near the Fred Meyer department store.

Coxe testified that he left Coday alone to choose and later returned to find a Ruger 10-22 gone, with $200 cash left on the counter to pay for the $195 rifle.

Coxe was one of 11 prosecution witnesses called Thursday by District Attorney Doug Gardner.

Coday, 28, is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting of Kim, who was remodeling at the store last August. Coday faces a maximum life prison term. The trial resumes today with expert DNA and ballistics testimony. The defense may begin its case as early as next week.

Other prosecution witnesses included Juneau police, investigators and Fred Meyer staff.

Kim was shot in the face and several times in the back. The murder weapon had been sawed off at the barrel and stock.

Shown the gun in its present condition, Coxe said, "It's been altered quite a bit, but there is no doubt in my mind that that's the gun he looked at."

Rayco Sales records concur.

Troy Cunningham, the day's first witness, said he saw a man fitting Coday's description traveling the same path that earlier witnesses said the gunman used to escape. Cunningham lives next to the trail.

Cunningham said he had only a brief look at the suspect's profile as he turned, responding to Cunningham's yell of "private property."

The jury saw a large photograph of a bootprint allegedly left by Coday as he fled the murder scene.

Juneau Police Sgt. Paul Hatch said, "The triangular lug pattern and the striations are consistent with the boots Coday wore."

During cross-examination, defense attorney David Seid pressed prosecution witness Joel Wahl, a Fred Meyer employee, who told the jury he sold Coday a hacksaw and tent two days before the shooting.

"I don't have the most reliable memory," Wahl said.

• Greg Skinner can be reached at greg.skinner@juneauempire.com.



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