AP NEWS

Judge denies sentence challenge in sports editor’s homicide

May 1, 2019

BOWLING GREEN, Mo. (AP) — A man who has served 15 years in prison for the 2001 killing of a Missouri sports editor has lost his bid to challenge his sentence.

Livingston County Judge Milan Berry on Tuesday denied a petition from Charles Erickson asking the state to prove why he should still be imprisoned for the murder of Columbia Daily Tribune sports editor Kent Heitholt.

Berry noted in her order that Erickson voluntarily pleaded guilty in 2004 and didn’t challenge the plea during sentencing or in a timely manner.

Erickson told police he had “dream-like” memories of helping Ryan Ferguson rob Heitholt before he was killed. Ferguson’s conviction and life sentence were were vacated in 2013.

The Tribune reported Erickson’s attorney, Landon Magnusson, said he intends to continue working to free Erickson.

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Information from: Columbia Daily Tribune, http://www.columbiatribune.com