Kansas City Man and Mississippi Co-Defendant Receive Life Sentences in Drug Conspiracy and Homicides

Two individuals were recently sentenced in federal court for their involvement in a drug trafficking operation that resulted in two homicides. The verdict was reached in an August 2023 trial.

A man named Shawn Burkhalter, also known as “Deuce,” has been given a life sentence without parole by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes on June 21. Burkhalter, who is 35 years old and from Kansas City, Missouri, will spend the rest of his life in federal prison. The co-defendant, Joshua “T” Nesbitt, 30, of Crowder, Mississippi, received a life sentence in federal prison without parole, just like the defendant.

The government announced its intention to pursue the death penalty for both defendants in 2019. The trial commenced on August 7, 2023.

On August 28, 2023, Burkhalter and Nesbitt were both found guilty in court of multiple charges including drug distribution, possession of drugs with intent to distribute, robbery, firearm offenses, witness tampering, murder, and evidence tampering. Burkhalter has been found guilty of another charge of witness tampering.

Between 2008 and 2018, Burkhalter and Nesbitt were involved in a plot to distribute cocaine and marijuana. Several more co-defendants have admitted guilt and received sentences for their involvement in the conspiracy.

According to trial evidence, Burkhalter and Nesbitt are accused of stealing cocaine from Danny Lamont Dean on September 10, 2015. Tragically, during the incident, Dean lost his life due to a fatal gunshot wound inflicted by an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle.

In less than a month, on October 4th, Nesbitt and a group of individuals took marijuana from Anthony Dwayne Johnson. Johnson was fatally shot by Nesbitt during the robbery, using the same AR-15 rifle.

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According to trial evidence obtained by FOX4KC, it has been revealed that the crime was orchestrated by Burkhalter, who was in custody when the murder took place. According to trial evidence, it was revealed that Johnson was murdered due to Burkhalter’s suspicion that he had been sharing information with investigators about Burkhalter’s role in Dean’s killing.

In September of 2015, Burkhalter and Nesbitt committed a robbery at a business in Kansas City, Mo., using the same AR-15 rifle.

During the June 20 sentencing hearing, the government presented evidence of Nesbitt’s multiple assaults on detention facility staff while he was awaiting trial.

Shakira Hooker and Autry Hines, from Kansas City, along with Joslyn Lee and Nickayla Jones, from Blue Springs, Rachel Ryce from Raytown, and Anthony Peltier from Lawrence, have all admitted guilt and received their sentences.

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