Mo. truck driver pleads guilty in drifter’s death

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — An eastern Missouri truck driver charged along with his wife and three sons in the killing of an Ohio drifter has been sentenced to life in prison without parole.

Chester Harvey was sentenced Monday in Boone County Circuit Court after admitting he was “totally responsible” for killing 20-year-old James William Boyd McNeely.

McNeely’s frozen corpse was found in December 2009 in the refrigerated compartment of Chester Harvey’s parked tractor trailer east of Vandalia. C.J. Harvey’s oldest son, Chad Harvey, has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, kidnapping and abandonment of a corpse. Murder charges were also filed against his wife and two other sons, who were 14 and 16 at the time.

Chester Harvey has said previously that he became embroiled in a drug plot with McNeely and that the drifter hurt his family.

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