Prosecutors reduced the charge in a Janesville shooting Wednesday, saying the shooting victim was becoming uncooperative and a witness “made herself scarce.”
Judge John Wood sentenced Anthony T. Gibson, 35, of 1310 Townline Road, Beloit, to six years in prison for a 2017 shooting in Janesville that left a man seriously injured and for another shots-fired incident in March.
Wood adopted the plea and sentencing agreement, which also called for Gibson to serve 10 years of extended supervision after his release from prison.
In the 2017 case, Gibson pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of second-degree recklessly endangering safety.
Assistant District Attorney Scott Dirks said he reduced the charge mainly because the victim became less cooperative over time and a key witness, who initially gave a statement to police, “made herself scarce” because she was afraid of Gibson.
Wood said the incidents could have resulted in loss of life.
He said it was “unfortunate” there are gunshot victims who become less cooperative, calling it a “very significant problem in our society.”
“It hampers our attempts to hold people fully accountable for their conduct,” he said.
Police said on June 18, 2017, in the first block of North Washington Street in Janesville, Gibson shot a 32-year-old man outside near a home where the mother of Gibson’s child lived. The man was injured in his chest and back.
In the case March 28 case, Gibson pleaded guilty to endangering safety by reckless use of a firearm, possessing a firearm as a convicted felon and felony bail jumping.
There were no injuries reported immediately from the March shooting, which was reported to Beloit police on the 1800 block of Madison Road, police said previously.
For the first case, he has about a years’ worth of sentence credit for time served. On the latter case, he has 105 days of credit.
Dirks pointed to Gibson’s lengthy criminal history, which includes incarceration from multiple charges of domestic violence.
The prosecutor said their agreement on the case would get a “sufficient punishment” while also protecting the community.
Defense attorney Melissa Frost said her client will have to come out of supervision and make choices about how he will spend the rest of his life.
Gibson took a deep breath before sharing brief thoughts, saying he owned up to his “bad decisions.”
“Only thing I can do for myself now is just to do the right thing and change my life for myself,” he told the court via video from the Rock County Jail.
Wood ended the hearing by wishing Gibson the best, hoping that he can change his life and be a better human being.