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    Kansas City, Mississippi men sentenced to life in federal prison

    By Dillon Seckington,

    30 days ago

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The two men who were found guilty in an August 2023 trial for their roles in a drug trafficking scheme including two murders were sentenced this week in federal court.

    Shawn “Deuce” Burkhalter, 35, of Kansas City, Missouri was sentenced to life in federal prison without parole by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes on June 21. His co-defendant, Joshua “T” Nesbitt, 30, of Crowder, Mississippi was sentenced the day prior, also to life in federal prison without parole.

    The government filed a notice of intent to seek the death penalty for both defendants in 2019. The trial began on August 7, 2023.

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    On August 28, 2023, Burkhalter and Nesbitt were both convicted at trial of one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine and marijuana, one count of possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute, one count of possessing marijuana with the intent to distribute, one count of robbery, two counts of discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence and a drug-trafficking crime, one count of brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, one count of being felons in possession of a firearm, one count of conspiracy to commit witness and evidence tampering, one count of murdering a potential witness and one count of evidence tampering. Burkhalter was convicted of one additional count of witness tampering.

    From 2008 to 2018, Burkhalter and Nesbitt engaged in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine and marijuana. Six additional co-defendants have pleaded guilty and have been sentenced for their roles in the conspiracy.

    Trial evidence shows that Burkhalter and Nesbitt stole cocaine from Danny Lamont Dean on September 10, 2015, shooting and killing him with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle in the process.

    Less than a month later, on October 4, Nesbitt and others stole marijuana from Anthony Dwayne Johnson. During the robbery, Nesbitt shot and killed Johnson with the same AR-15 rifle. Trial evidence shows that the crime was at the direction of Burkhalter who was detained in custody at the time of the murder. Trial evidence also shows that Johnson was killed because Burkhalter suspected him of providing information to investigations regarding Burkhalter’s involvement in Dean’s murder.

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    Burkhalter and Nesbitt robbed a Kansas City, Mo. business in September of 2015, brandishing the same AR-15 rifle.

    The government provided evidence at the June 20 sentencing hearing that Nesbitt assaulted detention facility staff on more than one occasion while awaiting trial.

    Co-defendants Shakira Hooker and Autry Hines, both of Kansas City, Joslyn Lee and Nickayla Jones, both of Blue Springs, Rachel Ryce of Raytown and Anthony Peltier of Lawrence have pleaded guilty and had previously been sentenced.

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

    For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to FOX 4 Kansas City WDAF-TV | News, Weather, Sports.

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