The Lawrence Journal-World is reporting this evening that a defendant in the recent aggravated assault case involving Boston Red Sox minor league pitcher Cody Kukuk has testified against his co-defendants in a preliminary hearing.
According to the Journal-World report, Zachary J. Pence of Lawrence is cooperating with the prosecution and testified against co-defendants Kukuk, Driscall Johnson, Yusef Kindell, and Gabriel Patterson. Pence told the court that early in the morning of November 8th, 2014, Kukuk and Patterson picked him up from his home, asking for "help" with a planned robbery.
Pence said that upon arrival at the victims’ apartment, Kukuk and Johnson, armed with an unloaded gun, were the only two with weapons.
Pence said he "fiddled with the window" before breaking down the front door, then Kukuk and Johnson went upstairs, eventually pulling a "naked kid" onto the hallway floor, pointing the gun to his head.
The victim inside the main-floor bedroom, Christopher Adams, a soon-to-be Kansas University senior, said he was asleep when two men with ski masks burst into his bedroom, turned on the light and began striking him with a wooden table leg and pointing a gun to his head.
Adams said the two masked men told him, "We’re not playing around, we’re serious. This is not a game," and demanded money and marijuana.
The men then left his room, leaving him with multiple injuries to his chin and back, and he heard a man say "I’m taking your Xbox."
Following the robbery, Kukuk and Patterson fled the state. They were later arrested in Long Beach, California, and extradited back to Lawrence.
In exchange for his testimony, the Douglas County District Attorney's office has offered to reduce Pence's charges to two counts of robbery with a chance for probation. Kukuk, Johnson, Kindell, and Patterson remain charged with four counts of aggravated robbery and one count of aggravated burglary. If convicted, they could each face over 200 months in prison.
Kukuk was drafted by the Red Sox in the seventh round in 2011 out of high school in Lawrence. He signed for a bonus of $800,000.