A 20-year-old suspect in the shooting death of Kansas City, Kan., Police Capt. Robert Melton has been charged with capital murder and is facing a possible death sentence if convicted in the case, the Kansas City Star reports.
Jamaal R. Lewis, who has no known criminal record, is also charged with aggravated assault on a law-enforcement officer and criminal discharge of a firearm. His bond was set at $10 million, the Star reports.
The site notes that under Kansas law, a conviction of capital murder carries only two possible sentences: life in prison with no chance of parole or the death penalty.
Melton, a 46-year-old veteran officer, was shot to death Tuesday afternoon while responding to reports of a drive-by shooting.
Authorities have also charged another man, 18-year-old Daqon Sipple, with aggravated assault on a law-enforcement officer. His bond was set at $100,000.
The two men are accused of being involved in the drive-by shooting Tuesday afternoon. An officer spotted a car believed to be involved in the drive-by and saw several people running from the vehicle, authorities said. The descriptions of the suspects were broadcast to other officers, and the person police said was the driver of the vehicle was arrested without incident, officials said.
Melton, who was in the area at the time, spotted another suspect where he was and attempted to block in the suspect with his patrol car, authorities said, but the suspect drew a gun and fired into the vehicle, hitting Melton several times before the officer could get out of the car.
Kansas City, Kan., Police Chief Terry Zeigler has said that police do not believe Melton's death was a planned ambush.
“This incident involved a suspect who committed a violent crime and then murdered an officer to avoid being caught,” Zeigler said.
Read more at the Kansas City Star.