Top Kansas court upholds convictions in triple murder case
July 2, 2021
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' top court on Friday upheld the first-degree murder convictions of man sentenced to 150 years in prison over a triple homicide in Kansas City, Kansas, duplex.
The state Supreme Court unanimously rejected arguments from an attorney for MonDale Le'on Douglas that the judge gave flawed instructions to the jury in his trial and that a new trial was warranted because a prosecutor appeared during closing arguments to express a personal opinion that Douglas was the killer.
Douglas, now 31, was convicted of the fatal April 2018 shootings of 51-year-old Edward Rawlins, 46-year-old David Rawlins and 40-year-old Addrin Coats.
A woman called police the next day after seeing one of the victim's bodies lying near the front door of the duplex. Arriving officers found the other victims inside.
Each of Douglas' convictions in Wyandotte County District Court brought a sentence of a least 50 years in prison. District Judge Wesley Griffin ordered them to be served one after the other.
The Supreme Court said the trial's outcome would not have changed because of the prosecutor's remark or because Griffin didn't tell jurors they could convict Douglas of a lesser crime.
Justice Dan Biles wrote for the court that "overwhelming evidence" supported the verdict.