Man Pleads Guilty in City Heights Shootout Where He Took His Young Daughter
A man pleaded guilty to crimes related to a shooting in Covington's City Heights a year ago.
Tyler Copeland admitted guilt on charges of attempted murder, unlawful possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, and first degree wanton endangerment.
Covington Police responded to Benton and Phelps streets on October 18, 2020 after receiving a report of a shooting.
Officers found that Alexander Stokes had been shot one time in the arm and was taken to the hospital.
Copeland fled the scene.
According to a news release from the Kenton County Commonwealth's Attorney's Office, Covington Police Detective Jim Lindeman's investigation revealed that Stokes was dating the mother of Copeland's children.
Copeland had grown upset with Stokes's contact with his children and showed up at Stokes's residence to threaten him.
Video surveillance showed Stokes walking in the housing project when a white car driven by Copeland stopped in front of him. Copeland and Stokes each pulled guns and traded gunfire.
Stokes was wounded but Copeland was not hurt.
However, one of the bullets fired by Copeland went into a nearby apartment, nearly hitting a resident.
Lindeman's investigation showed that Copeland's 11-year old daughter was in his car at the time.
Both Stokes and Copeland are convicted felons and not permitted to possess firearms. Stokes told Det. Lindeman that he got a gun after receiving threats from Copeland, and provided evidence supporting that claim through Facebook posts by Copeland.
Copeland pleaded guilty on Tuesday and faces a recommended 15-year prison sentence. He will be formally sentenced on November 16.
Stokes previously pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a handgun by a convicted felon in this case, and faces a 5-year prison sentence on October 25.
“We can’t have felons shooting it out anywhere in this town, but especially not in a crowded housing project," Commonwealth’s Attorney Rob Sanders said.
Sanders said that residents are packed into City Heights so tightly that it was incredibly lucky no one else was injured or killed.
“It’s violence like this that produces the nightly body count we see across the river but we won’t stand for it here,” said Sanders. “We don’t need Cincinnati’s kind of problems on the south side of the river.”