Plea deal reduces murder sentence by 25 years

December 26, 2019 GMT

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A plea deal with prosecutors means that a Missouri man convicted in a fatal stabbing will spend far less time in prison than he was originally ordered to serve.

Anthony Shegog was sentenced to 30 years in prison after his 2015 second-degree murder conviction in the 2014 death of Wayne Lige in Columbia. The conviction was vacated last year when a judge cited ineffective defense counsel. An appeals court upheld Boone County Circuit Judge Kevin Crane’s ruling.

The Columbia Tribune reports that on Monday, Shegog pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of involuntary manslaughter. Crane sentenced him to five years and gave him credit for time served, meaning Shegog will be freed late next year.

Boone County Assistant Prosecutor Kristen Mengwasser said the state faced a risk if the case went back to trial, especially since an “essential witness” has since died.

Lige was found dead in October 2014. Police said they found knives, Lige’s wallet and other items at Shegog’s apartment.