Dayton man accused of stabbing partner during fight over 'respect'


William Cooper, 43, is charged with murder and tampering with evidence; his friend, 51-year-old James Cole, faces charges of making a false report to a peace officer and tampering with evidence.

The investigation started around 4am Monday after Dayton police received a 911 call about an injured person at a home in the 100 block of West Linney Street.

Police say Cole told dispatchers that 28-year-old Zaccheus Thomas was holding a knife when he suffered a seizure and fell forward, stabbing himself. But Dayton police say when officers knew the story wasn't adding up when they saw the evidence.

During an investigation, detectives learned that Thomas and Cooper were involved romantically and had gotten in an argument over "respect" within their relationship. During their fight, Thomas was stabbed in the chest and the knife was tampered with afterwards.

Police say Thomas was taken via LifeFlight to Memorial Hermann Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Both suspects were taken to the Liberty County Jail.

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