Murder charges dismissed for 4 who allegedly kidnapped Rapid City man
RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Murder charges have been dropped for four suspects in a fatal April 9 shooting at the Dakota Rose Inn in Rapid City.
That shooting left Jesus Vance dead, and left four people charged with aiding and abetting first degree murder, aiding and abetting second degree kidnapping and aiding and abetting aggravated assault.
Seventh Circuit Judge Jeffrey Connolly ruled there is no dispute about co-defendants William Long, Travis Nelson, Tracy Laughlin and Gilbert Reyna being charged with the kidnapping and assault of Jake Williams.
However, Connolly’s order says the person who was killed, Jesus Vance, was also involved in the kidnapping. Where Williams, who was the victim, shot him dead during the event.
The four argued that none of them were the ones who actually shot Vance, and the State had no grounds pursing the charge.
The Court agreed and said the State is asking the Court to apply a South Dakota felony-murder statute in a way it appears to have never been applied before, leading to the murder charges being dropped.
The Court is not dismissing the kidnapping and assault charges against the four defendants, and Long could face up to 100 years behind bars.
The trial date is tentatively set for November 8.
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