Man receives 16-year term in 2012 shooting case

Becky Campbell • Sep 26, 2013 at 4:23 PM

A Jonesborough man who shot another man in the face during an argument last year was sentenced to 16 years in prison during a hearing Wednesday.

Freddie Mitchell Lewis, aka Rooster, 33, pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree murder for shooting Reed Baker during a second encounter after their initial confrontation had ended.

Lewis intended to plead guilty in June, but Judge Robert Cupp cut that hearing short when Lewis made a claim of self defense by saying Baker pulled a knife on him prior to the shooting.

In the end, Lewis’ attorney, Charles London, worked out a “best interest” or Alford plea. That means Lewis agreed the state would present proof that he shot Baker and there was a high chance a jury could convict him.

That June hearing was continued until Wednesday, and the plea was completed at that time.

London said there was evidence from the preliminary hearing that indicated Baker and Lewis had met while both were in jail on unrelated charges. After they got out of jail, their friendship continued.

The shooting happened Sept. 19, 2012, when Lewis had been invited to Baker’s residence, London said.

“He was invited over there as part of a setup. As soon as he walked in the door, he was jumped by (Baker) and his money was taken out of his pocket,” London said after Wednesday’s hearing.

Lewis and Baker got into an altercation and then they left Baker’s residence only to both end up at the home of a mutual friend. That’s where the altercation continued.

“I would argue the proof would show the victim pulled a knife and my client pulled a gun,” London said.

An aggravated assault charge was dismissed, but Lewis also pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a weapon. He received a two-year sentence on that, but it will be served concurrent to the 16 years.

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