Kansas Man Will Spend Four Years Behind Bars for Decapitating Man with Guitar String

The man was able to make a deal due to issues with the case.

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Complex Original

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Officials in Kansas say a man was sentenced to jail yesterday for using a guitar string to behead a man. 

According to the Associated Press, James Paul Harris allegedly shot James Gerety in the stomach in Lyndon, Kan. back in 2011, then, after torturing him over a two-day period, decapitated him with the guitar string. The Associated Press reports that Harris was initially charged with first-degree murder, but was able strike a deal with prosecutors and plead no contest to involuntary manslaughter due to issues with the case: 

But Osage County Attorney Brandon Jones said pursuing the more serious charge posed challenges because of problems with evidence and witnesses.

Other than a portion of the victim's skull, prosecutors didn't have the victim's body, the murder weapon hadn't been recovered, not all of the prosecution's witnesses were available, and prosecutors faced credibility issues with a major witness, Jones said.

Harris was sentenced to four months and two years in prison. According to the Topeka Capital-Journal, the victim's brother, Tom Gerety, called the justice system "a joke."

[via Associated Press and Topeka Capital-Journal]

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