A Richmond man convicted in the 2002 murders of two Lincoln County residents has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for at least 25 years.
Jamarkos Campbell, 24, was sentenced Tuesday by Circuit Judge Jeffrey Burdette. It was the maximum sentence Campbell could have received.
A jury convicted Campbell in the shooting deaths of Ryan Shangraw, 20, and Harold "Bo" Upton III, 18.
According to testimony at Campbell's trial, he and four friends traveled from Richmond to rural Lincoln County in February 2002 to rob Shangraw because they knew he sold cocaine.
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Upton, a high-school senior, and two teenage girls happened to be visiting Shangraw when three of the assailants came into his small trailer. The others waited outside, according to testimony.
After Shangraw told the robbers he didn't have any cocaine and struggled briefly over the rifle Campbell had, Campbell shot him, according to an accomplice, Matthew Tolson, who pleaded guilty in the case.
Tolson said he thought another man, Deonte Simmons, now 25, shot Upton during the hail of gunfire that followed the first shot by Campbell.
Years passed without arrests in the case before police got a key piece of evidence — the discovery that DNA on a bandanna thrown away near the murder scene matched Campbell's.
Authorities had taken a sample of Campbell's DNA after he was arrested in Richmond on drug-related charges years after the murders in Lincoln County.
The others charged in the murders are Simmons; Neccolus Mundy, 26; and Charles E. Smith, 26.
They are scheduled for trial later this month, but several motions are pending that could delay the trial.
The prosecutor, Commonwealth's Attorney Eddy Montgomery, plans to seek the death penalty for Simmons, Mundy and Smith if they are convicted, according to court documents. Campbell could not have been sentenced to death because he was only 16 when the murders occurred.
Jurors convicted Campbell of murder, wanton murder, robbery, burglary and wanton endangerment.
The panel recommended that prison terms for the other crimes run consecutive to the minimum 25-year sentence on the murder conviction, but state law would not allow that, Montgomery said.