Arrest Made In Spokane Valley Cold Case Homicide - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Arrest Made In Spokane Valley Cold Case Homicide

KHQ.COM - Sheriff's major crimes detectives have arrested a 58-year-old suspect in the November 1992 murder of a Spokane Valley furniture store owner. Patrick K. Gibson was arrested in Stanwood, Washington at about 6:50 a.m. and booked into jail there on a First Degree Murder charge. He's expected to be transferred to the Spokane County Jail sometime this week.

On November 7, 1992, Brian Cole and his wife were working late in their East Sprague business, "Cole's Traditions In Oak".  A man entered the store and demanded their money, stating that "this is a stick up."

Brian responded by saying "You're kidding?" The suspect then took out a pistol and began aiming it at both of the Coles. They explained to the suspect that most customers paid for furniture by check or credit care and they didn't have any cash Mrs. Cole handed the robber $18 from her purse.

The suspect then ordered them to the back of the store. Mrs. Cole used a scooter because of her multiple sclerosis and Brian asked the robber if he was going to hurt a handicapped woman. The man said he "just might."

 Brian attempted to overpower the suspect and was shot in the head and chest. Although he managed to call 911, he died of his injuries at Spokane Valley Medical Center.

During the struggle Brian was able to rip off the suspect's baseball cap and sunglasses. Detectives worked the case extensively and the case was featured on American's Most Wanted in January of 1993. Still a suspect remained at large.

In December 2010 a review of the case revealed some evidence that had not been submitted for DNA testing. It was, and on April 18th, that a detective received notification that DNA on the evidence had been matched to Patrick K. Gibson's DNA profile, on record from a previous conviction and incarceration in the federal prison system.

Detectives researched Gibson's history and learned that he was not incarcerated at the time of the murder and that his name had been checked by law enforcement agencies in Seattle, Montana and Nevada during 1992, 1993 and 1994. National crime databases showed he had prior convictions for kidnapping, rape, robbery and unlawful possession of a firearm.

On April 20th detectives Spokane with the FBI about robberies Gibson had previously been convicted of committing and he learned that Gibson wore similar disguises during the course of those crimes---fake beard, hat and a trench coat.

Based on the DNA match and supporting events and information detectives obtained an arrest warrant charging Gibson with one count of First Degree Murder in connection with the death of Brian Cole in Spokane County as a result of homicidal violence which occurred during the commission of a felony, crime and robbery.

Detectives were able to quickly locate Gibson in Stanwood because he is a convicted sex/kidnap offender and must register his home address with law enforcement there
 

 

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