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Federal prosecutors to seek death penalty for men charged in KC murders, drug trafficking conspiracy

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Federal prosecutors today announced that they are going to seek the death penalty for two men previously charged in connection to two murders in the Kansas City area.

Shawn Burkhalter, 30 , of Kansas City and Joshua Nesbitt, 25, of Crowder, Mississippi were indicted last year for the murders of Anthony Johnson and Danny Dean.

Joshua Nesbitt (left) and Shawn Burkhalter (right)

On Tuesday, the government filed a notice of intent to seek the death penalty against the defendants. Burkhalter and Nesbitt allegedly shot and killed Dean on Sept. 10, 2015 in a drug related robbery.

According to a federal indictment, Burkhalter and Nesbitt shot and killed Johnson on Oct. 4, 2015 in order to prevent him from testifying or talking to law enforcement. They allegedly used the same gun in both homicides.

The indictment also alleges that the two men threatened to kill another witness unless the person helped hide the AR-15 rifle used to murder Johnson and Dean.

There are six other suspects are accused of drug-trafficking crimes and assisting Burkhalter and Nesbitt.

Anthony Peltier, 37 of Lawrence, Kansas is charged in the case as well as other co-defendants Sharika Hooker, Autry Hines, Nickayla Jones and Rachel Ryce. Joslyn Lee  has already taken a plea deal in the case.

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