Would-be cop Killer Gets 20 Years in Prison
A Brooklyn youth who narrowly missed shooting and possibly killing an off-duty West Indian cop but was injured instead by the sharpshooting officer is to spend the next 20 years in prison for his actions.And Feris Jones, a 21-year veteran of the New York Police Department who is a police detective says she is satisfied with the sentence imposed on 20 year old Winston Cox after he pleaded guilty to attempting to kill and assault her inside a Brooklyn hairdressing salon in October last year.“Twenty years is fair,” said Jones, better known across the City and in the New York Police Department as “Jonesey.
” Cox had faced a possible 40 year sentence behind bars if he had gone to trial and was convicted of a variety of violent offences arising out of the City’s most dramatic confrontations between a crook and a cop in recent years. The youth had burst into a Brooklyn beauty parlor, attempted to hold up "Jonesey," the salon owner, an employee and another customer announcing “this is a robbery I will kill you.”But what he didn’t know was that the fearless cop who wears her hair in braids was in the place and after shepherding the women into a bathroom, advising them to get down on the floor, “Jonesey” emerged with gun in hand, identified herself as a police officer, ordered him to drop his weapon and when he refused and started shooting, barely missing the West Indian with a bullet that whizzed past her head, the cop went into action.
According to eyewitnesses and Jones herself, in textbook fashion she fired a single shot into the door knob, locking the mechanism and trapping the thug inside. She then shot the gun out of his hand, injuring him and when he realized he was trapped, he kicked out a panel of glass in the door and escaped, leaving a trail of blood. He was subsequently tracked down and arrested within 72 hours.All across the City and the country, the Black cop who could easily have aimed the shot to kill Cox instead of injuring him, was hailed as a hero, mainly for her bravery, calm reaction under fire and for her marksmanship.
She was promptly promoted to detective by Police Commissioner Raymond Kelley, while Mayor Michael Bloomberg said “this is a story that will be told at the Police Department for years to come.”Kelley put it differently at the time: “her reserve under fire was matched only by her marksmanship.”Before his trial got underway in Brooklyn the other day, Cox agreed to plead guilty in exchange for a shorter prison term and Jones and the other women in the salon were in the courtroom to see the outcome.
They had previously agreed to the plea bargain.Lewis Lieberman, an assistant district attorney in Brooklyn who was ready to prosecute Cox said that they “did not take this plea (deal) lightly.”As Lieberman explained it to State Supreme Court Justice, Suzanna Mondo, the District Attorney’s office headed by Charles Hynes hoped Cox would take advantage of the rehabilitation opportunities in prison and make something of his life because he would “still be a relatively young man when he gets out.”Cox’ female accomplice, Nefrititi Earl, 20, admitted that she held the door open so that Cox could enter the salon and she pleaded guilty. She was sent to prison for 42 months.A third perpetrator, Steven McLeod had previously pleaded guilty to supplying Cox with the gun and got two years in prison.Jones who grew up in Barbados’ south coast said that being cool under fire wasn’t new to her.“I am always cool and calm and I don’t like to lose my temper and as my friends in Barbados of ten, ‘I am a bit too soft,” she said.“I was taught to be mannerly, you know, how to behave and you know how to speak and when it’s time for you to speak,” she said then. “You know, how, when and where.” The training was provided her parents, the late Violet and Clarence Jones.