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Archive for Wednesday, December 8, 2004

Killer gets life term

December 8, 2004

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— A Wyandotte County jury on Tuesday spared the life of a man convicted of killing five people in a spree that began as retaliation for a crime committed against his mother.

The jury instead recommended that Darrell Lamont Stallings, 34, be sentenced to life in prison. A judge will sentence Stallings in January.

The same jury convicted Stallings two weeks ago on five counts of capital murder and one count each of criminal discharge of a firearm, attempted first-degree murder and criminal possession of firearm in the June 2002 shooting rampage in Kansas City, Kan.

Another Kansas City, Kan., man, Errik Harris, 28, faces the same charges, but his trial date has not been set.

Before the jury returned its recommendation Tuesday, Stallings read a 15-page statement begging for his life and saying he was sorry for his crimes.

Stallings, often wiping tears from his eyes, apologized to the families of each victim.

"I am truly sorrowful for the pain and related tribulations I have caused," Stallings said. He said he had no excuses for the crimes, but was delusional because of an attack on his mother two months earlier.

Prosecutors charged that Stallings fatally shot Trina Jennings, 26, who was seven months pregnant, and wounded Anthony Jennings because he believed they were involved in the robbing and beating of Stallings' mother.

Also killed were Samantha Sigler, 24; Destiny Wiles, 23; Tameika Jackson, 24; and Melvin Montague, 34. Prosecutors said those victims witnessed the shootings of Trina and Anthony Jennings.

On Tuesday, prosecutors said the five victims had nothing to do with the attack on Stallings' mother. Defense attorneys argued that Stallings suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.

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