MONCKS CORNER -- A 29-year-old Cordesville man will serve 20 years in prison for his role in the 2001 murder of Parrish Reeves.
On Monday, Treze Feaster became the third defendant convicted in connection with Reeves' death when, instead of facing trial, he pleaded guilty in circuit court to lesser charges of voluntary manslaughter and second-degree burglary.
Reeves disappeared from his Cordesville home in January 2001 and was originally considered a missing person, despite his mother's insistence that foul play was involved. Frances Reeves, 78, told investigators from the beginning that her 36-year-old son would have never left home without his dog, Kippy. Plus, blood was smeared on the wall and his attic ransacked.
Investigators found his body stuffed inside a 55-gallon drum, buried beneath one of the co-defendant's homes.
Jeffrey Michaelson was sentenced to 45 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of murder in July.
Parrish Reeves' former stepdaughter, Katherine Feaster, was sentenced to eight years in prison after she pleaded guilty to burglary and misprision of a felony.
Prosecutors say Treze Feaster, Katherine Feaster's husband, admitted to dropping Michaelson off at Reeves' home, knowing he was going to shoot him. Treze Feaster then returned to Reeves' house and helped Michaelson cover up the slaying by taking the victim's truck and work trailer. He also helped Michaelson bury the body, according to 9th Circuit Deputy Solicitor Bryan Alfaro.
Alfaro said they offered Feaster a plea agreement because they didn't have the same evidence used to convict Michaelson.
"We were prepared to go forward with the trial," Alfaro said. "There were some issues in his trial that were not present in the case of the co-defendant we tried earlier."
Circuit Judge Kristi Harrington sentenced Feaster to 30 years on the manslaughter charge but suspended 10 years. She also sentenced him to 15 years on the burglary charge, but that will be served concurrently.
Jeremiah Scharer, the fourth defendant in the case, was expected to testify against Feaster. Scharer's case is still pending.
Frances Reeves, who pursued the case for nearly a decade, said she hopes Scharer, Katherine Feaster's brother, gets the same punishment as Treze Feaster. She said Scharer was with Michaelson when he shot her son and could have done something about it.
"That man could have saved his life," she said.
Reach Andy Paras at 937-5589 or on twitter at twitter.com/andyparas.