CHARLESTON - A man found guilty of second degree murder in connection with a Sikeston man's shooting death will spend the next 30 years in prison.
Justin Robinson was sentenced to 30 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections Friday by Circuit Judge David Dolan Friday. Robinson was found guilty of second degree murder and armed criminal action on Feb. 15 following a jury trial for his part in the May 24, 2003, shooting death of Trevor Neal at Dixie and Osage streets in Sikeston's Sunset Addition.
Following a pre-sentence investigation, Dolan followed the jury's Feb. 16 recommendation for a sentence of 30 years for second degree murder and 15 years for the armed criminal action charge. The terms will run concurrently but Robinson will have to serve at least 85 percent of the second degree murder sentence as it is one of the charges that have this requirement in Missouri.
During the trial, Randy McKeller, Robinson's lifelong friend, was identified by Robinson and other witnesses as the person who shot Neal.
The jury found Robinson guilty of second degree murder for acting as an accomplice. The jury found it was Robinson who brought the murder weapon to the scene of the crime, compelled Neal to flee from the vehicle he was in, and then chased Neal down and held him while he was shot by McKeller.
McKeller was not caught and arrested until March 2004 and is scheduled to go to trial Aug. 11-12. The trial was rescheduled from an earlier date due to a change in defense attorneys.
Robinson is remembered by many in the area for being a first team all-state football player for the 1999 season and as Sikeston High School's all-time leading rusher.