A Kent man has been sentenced to two years in prison for killing a Florida man in a hunting accident in the city in October 2013.
Portage County Common Pleas Judge Laurie Pittman sentenced Joshua R. Cook, 28, of 4897 Sunnybrook Road, according to the Portage County Prosecutor’s Office. Cook pleaded guilty to one count each of reckless homicide and tampering with evidence, both third-degree felonies, and two counts of receiving stolen property, both fourth-degree felonies, in April.
Pittman also sentenced Cook to two years in prison for evidence tampering and 18 months on the receiving stolen property charges. Prosecutor Victor Vigluicci said all three sentences will run concurrent to each other, for a total sentence of two years.
Cook was accused of shooting and killing Donald W. Pigg, 56, of Beverly Hills, Fla., while out hunting with him in Kent on Oct. 14, 2013. After the shooting, which occurred within city limits where hunting is illegal, he and Pigg’s son hid their guns.
Kent police said Cook fatally shot and killed Pigg while trespassing on private property in Spring Water Park, a wooded area north of Howe Road between Mogadore and Sunnybrook roads on the south end of Kent, on Oct. 14, 2013. Vigluicci said the shooting took place shortly before 9 a.m. that day. Pigg, a Rootstown native, was taken to Akron City Hospital where he died Oct. 16
Investigators found two long guns hidden under leaves and dirt in the area, and charged both Cook and Donald J. Pigg, 28, of Cleveland — Donald W. Pigg’s son — with evidence tampering for allegedly hiding the weapons.
Donald J. Pigg is free on bond, scheduled to go on trial on charges of tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony, obstructing justice, a fifth-degree felony, hunting without a license and hunting without a deer permit, both fourth-degree misdemeanors. He faces a maximum of four years in prison.
He told the Record-Courier during an interview just after the shooting that it was “just a freak accident” that took place during his father’s annual trip back home.
Donald W. Pigg, a Rootstown native who died while hunting in Kent Monday, was killed in an accidental shooting by a fellow hunter, according to his son.
Donald J. Pigg said he was hunting with his father and a family friend Monday morning in the wooded area north of Howe Road between Mogadore and Sunnybrook roads when their friend accidentally shot his father.
“It was just a freak accident,” Donald J. Pigg said.
The area, formerly known as Spring Water Park, is in Kent’s southernmost point and bordered by Brimfield Township.
The Kent Police Department was called to the scene at 8:44 a.m.
Donald W. Pigg, 56, was taken to Akron City Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 1:13 am. Wednesday after undergoing surgery.
Donald J. Pigg said his father spent his life as an outdoorsman, and always made time to go fishing and hunting.