Judge Rejects Deal, Sentences St. Louis Man To Max 10 Years

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A judge has sentenced a St. Louis man to a maximum 10 years in prison for the beating death of a homeless man last year, rejecting a plea deal with prosecutors that would have given him an eight-year sentence.

Circuit Judge Rex Burlison sentenced Jarmond Johnson, 29, on Monday, accepting Johnson’s guilty plea to a reduced charge of involuntary manslaughter but rejecting the lighter sentencing deal, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

“I can’t control how the state charges, but I can control how it’s sentenced,” Burlison said at the Monday hearing.

Johnson had been charged with second-degree murder in the killing of an acquaintance, 35-year-old Dwight Washington, on Feb. 15, 2020, at the Civic Transit Center. Prosecutors said the attack followed an argument between Johnson and Washington that was caught on surveillance video and showed Johnson pushing Washington off a curb to the pavement, hitting Washington in the face, then picking up Washington’s body and dropping him to the concrete.

Washington, a father of three, died at a hospital a day after the attack.