October 8, 2010
Jefferson City, Mo. – Attorney General Chris Koster said a Jackson County jury today found Joseph Jones guilty of 1st degree murder, guilty of 2nd degree assault and guilty of two counts of armed criminal action. The Attorney General prosecuted the case in Jackson County Circuit Court, along with Assistant Attorney General Page Bellamy. The Attorney General’s Office had been named Special Prosecutor in the case.
“I feel that serving as Attorney General makes me a better prosecutor,” Koster said. “Returning to the courtroom from time to time helps me to be a better Attorney General.”
Koster served as Cass County prosecutor for 10 years.
Koster said Jones was the shooter in the case that also involved his cousin, Larry Jones. Larry Jones was convicted of 2nd degree murder and in September was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Joseph Jones faces life in prison with no possibility for parole with his 1st degree murder conviction.
According to Koster, Jones and his cousin entered a Kansas City, Missouri, apartment complex in August 2006 in search of Tyrone Stamps, who reportedly had purchased marijuana earlier in the day from Larry Jones and later argued with Jones over the phone. Joseph was armed with a 12-gauge shotgun when he and Larry entered the apartment complex and threatened some residents to find Stamps. As Stamps exited an upstairs apartment, Joseph Jones shot him in the chest. Stamps then ran back into the apartment as Jones continued shooting and struck a 10-year-old girl in the back, seriously wounding her. Stamps then jumped out a window and ran to his mother’s nearby apartment, where he collapsed and died in her arms. Jones and his cousin fled the scene with security officers in pursuit. Ultimately, they were caught and charged.
“The Attorney General’s Office plays a critical role in keeping dangerous criminals off the street,” Koster said. “The friends and family of those hurt by Joseph Jones deserved to see justice done, and I am pleased that my office was able to prove our case for 1st degree murder.”