- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 6, 2014

BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) - Two Bozeman residents pleaded not guilty Tuesday after being accused of helping an escaped rape suspect avoid recapture.

Cedric Standish-Codding, 21, entered his plea to obstructing justice, while Tristan Anacker pleaded not guilty to obstructing justice and tampering with evidence.

On Monday, Andrew Kranker of Bozeman denied obstruction and tampering charges.

A total of five people have been accused of helping Kevin Briggs, 28, after he escaped from a police interview room on Feb. 1.

Charging documents say Standish-Codding used a tool to cut Briggs out of his handcuffs and leg shackles then gave him $23 and a hooded coat.

The documents also state that Briggs used cellphones belonging to Anacker and co-defendant Michelle Jackson along with Jackson’s computer, and that Kranker threw away the belly belt Briggs had been wearing.

Kranker’s attorney, Al Avignone, said his client was asleep at his apartment when Briggs showed up. Avignone said he didn’t have enough information to respond to the allegation that his client threw out the belt.

Standish-Codding is jailed on $125,000 bond while Jackson, who pleaded not guilty last month, is jailed on a $10,000 bond. Anacker and Kranker were released without bond.

Another man, William Michael Smith, 29, was scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday after being accused of giving Briggs a ride to Missoula as he sought to flee the state.

Briggs was arrested Feb. 21 in Portland, Oregon. He is charged with aggravated assault and attempted sexual intercourse without consent after his ex-girlfriend reported he attacked her.

Briggs also is charged with assault on a peace officer, escape and failing to register as a sex offender while he was on the run. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges and remained jailed with bail set at $1 million.

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