SD trooper attacker sentenced to 45 years


RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) – A Washington state man will spend more than four decades in prison for the attempted murder of a South Dakota Highway Patrol trooper.

Donald Willingham was sentenced Monday morning to a total of 45 years in prison and a $60,000 fine for the assault on Trooper Zac Bader. Bader was assaulted during a 2015 traffic stop on Interstate 90 near Box Elder.

Willingham was sentenced to 25 years for the attempted murder and aggravated assault of Bader, five years for gun possession and another 15 years for drug possession. He will serve these sentences consecutively.

He was convicted last December.

Three people who were with Willingham at the time of the attack had previously pleaded guilty to drug possession or being an accessory to a crime.

Bader says he is ready to move forward. Bader says,”You gotta go out and treat people with respect and treat people fair, and continue to do what makes you happy. And that’s being apart of this community and in this role as a state trooper. So the next step is to just keep on moving forward.”



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