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Man charged with murder in deaths on Navajo Nation

PINON, Ariz. — A man has been charged with two counts of first-degree
murder in the deaths of a father and son near the Navajo community of Pinon.

Richard Cooke is set to appear in federal court Friday for a preliminary

A criminal complaint says Elvin Tachine and Cooke started fighting after
Tachine’s goats wandered onto Cooke’s property. The complaint says Tachine threw
Cooke to the ground and walked off.

Authorities say Cooke went home, got a rifle and shot Tachine and his son,
Leveil Natoni, in the chest.

Cooke told authorities he felt threatened by the men, neither of whom had
firearms. The complaint says Natoni had a tire iron at his side as Cooke
approached the family’s residence but was shot from a distance.

Cooke’s attorney did not respond to messages left Wednesday.


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