Section: LOCAL & STATE
Byline: BY RON SYLVESTER, The Wichita Eagle
When most boys his age are getting used to having their driver’s licenses and deciding what to wear to the prom, Joshua Duque is headed to prison.
Duque, 17, will spend the next decade locked up for his role in a shooting that left two people dead on Thanksgiving eve 2009.
At the time Jesse Foust and Adrian Jackson were found shot to death in their home, Duque was 15. He celebrated his 16th and 17th birthdays in the county jail.
“This was an outrageous crime,” Sedgwick County Judge Anthony Powell said Thursday while sentencing Duque to 122 months.
It was the maximum allowed under state law. Duque pleaded no contest last month as an adult to two counts of solicitation to commit first-degree murder and aggravated robbery.
“Jesse was 25 when she was murdered,” Graham Foust said of his daughter. “How old will this young man be when he gets out of prison?”
Duque will have to serve at least 8 years, 8 months before he’s eligible for parole.
After he’s released, Duque will have to report to a parole officer for three years. He’ll have to register as a violent offender the rest of his life.
Prosecutors say Duque went to the couple’s home with Sam Holton.
Holton, 19, is serving an 18-year sentence after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in shooting Jackson and Foust.
Both Duque and Holton faced life in prison when they were initially charged with first-degree murder. But the state’s case fell apart after a judge found that police conducted an illegal search and arrest of Holton at his Mulvane home.
That made the evidence they collected, including Holton’s confession to the shootings, inadmissible at trial.
Holton and Duque both had told police they went to the house to buy marijuana from Jackson. They ended up robbing the couple of jewelry and athletic shoes and leaving them both dead.
The couple’s toddlers were left with the bodies of their parents.
“I hope and pray that while you’re in prison, it will replay in your mind every day, what you did,” said Iris Jackson, Adrian’s mother.
Jackson, 26, was a hip-hop artist who had received national recognition under the name MindRight.
Foust, 25, was studying social work at Wichita State University.
Charlie O’Hara, Duque’s lawyer, told the judge the teen was remorseful for his involvement in the killings.
“He was 15 at the time,” O’Hara said. “He was a follower, not a leader.”
Powell asked Duque whether he wanted to speak.
“I’m cool,” Duque said, indicating he had nothing more to say.
Reach Ron Sylvester at 316-268-6514 or firstname.lastname@example.org.