2007 Murder of Zack Jones and the Beating on Matthew Bankston
Posted in the Lake Ozark Forum
#1 Aug 24, 2009
On June 10th, 2007, my grandson Matthew Bankston and his friend Zach Jones were attacked at a park in Lebanon, MO. Zach lost his life and Matthew has sustained permanent physical and mental damage. At the time the 4 people involved were arrested, the Laclede County Prosecuting Attorney Angie Hemphill Wright, stated that she was going to seek first degree murder charges for all parties involved. Since that time, the justice system has issue several blows to the family of the victims. First a plea agreement with Jerry Broyles that allowed his sentence to be reduced to life, next Kimberly Dunkin conviction of first-degree murder on Feb 5 was thrown out by the judge and reduced to second-degree murder. Now the family has found out that the Prosecuting Attorney is planning on reducing Nathan Gibbs case from first degree murder and three counts of felony armed criminal action to Manslaughter. In just over a month this person who at one point the Prosecuting Attorney insisted on charging as an adult will be walking around in the town where his victims live. What could have changed in 2 years, 2 months and 8 days? What kind of justice is it for Matthew, Zach and their families? Must they live in fear for their lifes and the lifes of their love ones? What is wrong with our justice system that we would even consider letting this man walk free after serving only a little over 2 years for the brutal murder of one boy and the permanent damage he has done to the second. Where is the town that was outraged about his crime?
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