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kC man sentenced for illegal firearm following fatal shooting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2012

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – David M. Ketchmark, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Kansas City, Mo., man who was responsible for a fatal shooting was sentenced in federal court today for illegally possessing a firearm.

Kenji P. Walker, 34, of Kansas City, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs to nine years in federal prison without parole. The court noted the maximum penalty of 10 years under federal statute, which was reduced by one year due to the time Walker has already spent in state custody because he shot another man to death. The charges in that state case are still pending.

On July 29, 2011, Walker pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Walker also admitted that he shot Keith Williams to death on the night of March 19, 2011. Walker was in Williams’s bedroom when he shot Williams in the head. Walker took Williams’s cell phone and handgun and fled from the residence. Walker went to the home of his cousin, who disposed of the gun by throwing it into Troost Lake. After that, Walker’s sister picked him up and brought him to her house.

The next morning, on March 20, 2011, Independence police officers were investigating a report of gunshots when they went to the home of Walker’s sister. Officers noticed what appeared to be bullet holes going into the residence, as well as bullet holes that appeared to have been made by shots fired from inside the house. The children who answered the door told police officers that they were asleep when they heard gunshots.

While one officer waited with the children for their mother to come home, another officer searched outside the residence for shell casings. An officer saw Walker jump out of a window and run away on foot. Officers pursued Walker and, during the chase, saw him throw a Bersa .40-caliber “Thunder” semi-automatic handgun into a parking lot.

After Walker was apprehended, he told officers that earlier that morning, when he opened the front door of his sister’s residence, a vehicle pulled up in front of the house and someone began shooting at him. Walker returned fire.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Walker has prior felony convictions for sale of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance and stealing. In addition, the court deemed the death of Keith Williams to be considered at the least voluntary manslaughter for sentencing purposes.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin G. Davids. It was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and the Independence, Mo., Police Department.

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