Macyo January Sentenced To Life In Prison

January (center) and his lawyers (Credit: The Gazette)

UPDATE Macyo January has been sentenced to life in prison, with a chance for parole after 80 years.


UPDATE: The teenager convicted of killing a Fort Carson solider and his pregnant wife is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday.

The sentencing hearing for Macyo January will start at 8:30 a.m. A jury found him guilty of shooting and killing Staff Sgt. David Dunlap and Whitney Butler, when they walked in on him burglarizing their home in January of 2013.

11 News will have a reporter in the courtroom. Check back for updates.
PREVIOUS: Macyo January has been found guilty of killing a Fort Carson soldier and his pregnant wife.

It took a jury less than four hours to reach their verdict after beginning deliberations at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday. They found January guilty of first-degree murder in the January 2013 killings, as well as first-degree burglary. Authorities said January shot and killed Staff Sgt. David Dunlap and Whitney Butler when they walked in on him burglarizing their home.

The families of both victims were in the courtroom when the verdict was read.

January will be sentenced Oct. 22. He faces life in prison for his crimes, though due to being 17 years old at the time, he could be eligible for parole.

When the public defender polled the jury, all said "yes" when asked if this was their verdict.
PREVIOUS: The fate of a teenager accused in a double-murder now rests in the hands of a jury.

Prosecutors say that Macyo January's signature was on every aspect of the grisly 2013 killings of a Fort Carson soldier and his pregnant wife, from the fingerprints found at the home to his DNA pulled from the murder weapon. January, according to prosecutors, killed Staff Sgt. David Dunlap and Whitney Bulter after they surprised him in the middle of burglarizing their home.

But the defense argues that January didn't get to the house until after the real murderer left. January's lawyers say he first rummaged through Butler's car, then peered into the home and saw the bloody mess left by the killer.

"The defense attorney believe that they arrested ultimately the wrong person. In openings, they suggested that one person fled the scene and that Mayco January was just in the neighborhood when he happened upon the scene and that he panicked when he saw the two dead bodies," Jakob Rodgers explained. Rodgers is a reporter for our partners, The Gazette, and sat in on the trial daily.

The Gazette reports a DNA analyst with the Colorado Springs Police Department testified in court that January was one of at least three people to leave their DNA on the handgun used to kill the couple. None of the DNA on the gun belonged to the victims, according to the analyst.

On Monday, the jury heard audio recordings of two witnesses who told detectives January confessed to the killings. Those same witnesses later testified in court and denied hearing those alleged confessions firsthand.

January, now 19, was 17 when Dunlap and Butler were murdered, but due to the brutal nature of the crimes, he is being tried as an adult. If the jury finds him guilty, he could face life in prison.