For Immediate Release
July 30, 2021
A Lee's Summit man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for the fatal shooting of Matthew Bland-Williams in 2020 outside and Independence, MO, residence, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker announced today.
A Jackson County judge sentenced Arieous K. Walton-Merritt, dob: 8/27/1996, to 10 years in prison for his Involuntary Manslaughter conviction and 10 years for his conviction of an Armed Criminal Action. A Jackson County jury in early May convicted the defendant of both counts. The judge on Friday set the 10-year sentences to run consecutively.
According to court records filed today, Independence police were dispatched Thursday to the 18800 block of E. Wigwam Place in Independence on a shooting. Officers found the victim in the front of the residence. He was later pronounced dead at Centerpoint Medical Center. Police soon identified a second scene after the defendant collapsed in front of another Independence residence due to gun shots wounds. He was transported to North Kansas City Hospital. Surveillance video from a neighbor of the Wigwam scene showed the defendant firing two shots at the victim before a struggle began. The victim gets the gun away and fires shots at the defendant as he starts to drive away.
For more information, contact:
Director of Communication
Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office
Jean Peters Baker, Prosecutor
Work : (816) 881-3812
Mobile : (816) 674-3954