St. Louis man pleads guilty in store parking lot killing

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MIAMI – FEBRUARY 02: A judges gavel rests on top of a desk in the courtroom of the newly opened Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum February 3, 2009 in Miami, Florida. The museum is located in the only known structure in the nation that was designed, devoted to and operated as a separate station […]

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ST. LOUIS – A St. Louis man has pleaded guilty to killing another man in the parking lot of a grocery store in exchange for a 14-year prison term.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that 29-year-old Lamarkis Cowan’s first-degree murder trial was set to begin this week when he pleaded guilty Monday to voluntary manslaughter in the December 2016 shooting death of 20-year-old Kevin Brown. Authorities say Brown was running away after a fight inside the store when he was shot. Cowan turned himself in days after the shooting.

Cowan’s lawyer, Jeremy Beaird, says Cowan would have offered a self-defense claim at trial this week but that taking the state’s plea offer “was in the best interest of all the parties.”

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