Plan to steal from man in church parking lot turned deadly. Now Derby man will go to prison

A Sedgwick County choose has sentenced an 18-year-old Derby man to 27 1/2 years in prison in the deadly capturing of a 34-year-old Wichita man final 12 months, mentioned Dan Dillon, a spokesman for the Sedgwick County District Attorney’s Office.

Philip Lee Walls, whose title can be spelled “Phillip” in police and court docket information, pleaded responsible on March 11 to second-degree intentional homicide, tried aggravated theft and aggravated kidnapping in the December 2023 loss of life of Daniel McPherson. Walls and one other man, 20-year-old James Giovanni Lee Sawyer, have been arrested in Oklahoma, after going to a hospital there so Walls might be handled for a gunshot wound. At about 2 a.m. on Dec. 6, 2023, authorities in Oklahoma notified Sedgwick County emergency dispatch, who in flip contacted the Wichita Police Department.

Police found McPherson dead from a gunshot wound to his head close to a church at 1755 E. MacArthur, close to Hydraulic, after receiving info that his physique can be there.

Sawyer, who’s charged with first-degree felony homicide and two counts of tried aggravated theft, has pleaded not responsible to his costs, court docket information present. His trial is ready for Aug. 26.

A factual foundation for Walls’ plea that was connected to his plea settlement offers this account of the killing:

Walls and Sawyer determined to rob McPherson of medication or different property on Dec. 5, 2023, and swapped texts and spoke in particular person about their plans, which included bringing a gun and making McPherson sit in their automobile with a belt round his neck whereas they stole from him.

They talked about utilizing the gun as “a last resort because they did not want to have a ‘body’ to deal with,” the factual foundation says.

That evening, they invited McPherson into the automobile and drove to an empty parking lot subsequent to the church. When Sawyer looped the belt round McPherson’s neck and head to attempt to rob him, McPherson pulled a gun and shot Walls, who was in the motive force’s seat. Sawyer then allegedly pulled a .38-caliber revolver and fired at McPherson a number of instances. At least one bullet struck McPherson’s head.

Walls and Sawyer then dumped McPherson’s physique and drove away, met up with a girlfriend and ultimately headed to the Oklahoma hospital “because they did not want to attract law enforcement attention by getting treatment for Walls’ injuries in the Wichita area,” in accordance to the factual foundation.

On Friday, Sedgwick County District Judge Jeffrey Goering instructed Walls he would serve consecutive 165-month prison sentences for every of the homicide and kidnapping counts. The 34-month time period he ordered for the tried theft will be served concurrent to the others, Dillon mentioned.

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