Man convicted in Poplar Bluff death

POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. (AP) — A southeastern Missouri jury that convicted a man in the shooting death of his sister-in-law's longtime boyfriend has recommended he serve two five-year prison sentences.

The Daily American Republic reports that a Butler County jury convicted 56-year-old Randy Johnson of Poplar Bluff of charges of manslaughter and armed criminal action after about five hours of deliberation. The panel recommended the prison terms Saturday.

Jurors concluded Johnson killed 60-year-old Gary Williamson in March of last year.

Johnson had testified that he shot Williamson during an altercation, believing Williamson had a weapon or was reaching for a brick or a bronze eagle statue on a deck railing.

Johnson says Williamson grabbed the pistol Johnson had pulled from a pocket, and that's when the gun fired.

Sentencing is set for July 19.


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