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Cedar Rapids man pleads to lesser charges in Taboo shooting
Written plea filed without hearing, Rush faces up to 30 years
CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids man set for trial next week pleaded to lesser charges Wednesday for fatally shooting his girlfriend and another man and injuring several others last April inside the Taboo Nightclub and Lounge.
Timothy L. Rush, 33, originally charged with two counts of second-degree murder, would have faced up to 100 years if convicted on those charges alone. Now, he will face only up to 30 years in prison.
Rush pleaded in writing Wednesday to two counts of involuntary manslaughter, five counts of reckless use of a firearm causing bodily injury, and one count each of intimidation with a dangerous weapon and possession of a firearm by a felon.
According to the plea agreement, three charges will run concurrently to the other charges and all other charges run consecutively for a total of 30 years in prison.
The other counts will be dismissed at sentencing, which hasn’t been set at this time.
The plea states federal prosecutors also will decline to prosecute Rush for any offenses stemming from this incident.
Many times, defendants convicted in state court also will be charged in federal court for incidents involving firearms.
The Gazette, as well as other media, had filed for Expanded Media Coverage on the case but were not alerted to the pleading. There was no plea hearing before a judge.
Earlier this month, Assistant Linn County Attorney Mike Harris asked for a delay on the trial previously set to start March 28. He said two essential witnesses were not available to testify, but a judge encouraged him to use video recorded testimony because Rush’s attorney had planned his retirement date for April 7.
Sixth Judicial District Judge Sean McPartland took the continuance under advisement but had not filed a ruling.
Harris didn’t immediately reply to an email request for comment.
Rush pleaded to unintentionally causing the death of Nicole Owens, 35 — his girlfriend and mother of a his 1-year-old daughter — and Marvin Cox, 31, both of Cedar Rapids. Cox was initially seriously injured and was on life support, but later died from his gunshot injuries.
The criminal complaint states that Rush “fired intentionally and indiscriminately,” with what police believe was a 9 mm handgun, into the large crowd at the club.
After further investigation, an amended complaint stated Rush also shot Alazia Cotton and Makayla Stokes, causing them serious injuries, and Traniece Worley, Denise Triplett and Richard Nicksion, who suffered bodily injuries.
According to the complaint, 10 people were shot, but the other victims are not named.
Rush, whose lawyer said he worked security at the club on weekends, was captured on video surveillance at the Taboo nightclub carrying a gun the morning of the shooting, a criminal complaint stated. The video also captured the shooting.
The video showed Rush running out of the club after the shooting, according to the complaint.
Rush planned to claim self-defense or defense of others at trial.
The other man, Dimione Walker, 29, charged for a separate shooting that night in the club, was convicted of first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of Michael Valentine. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
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