Man involved in 2002 murder given life in prison

A  Cape Girardeau man involved with a 2002 murder is facing life in prison without parole. 47-year-old Mark Gill was charged in connection with the murder of Ralph Lape in 2002 and was originally sentenced to death.

In July 2002, Gill and his accomplice Justin Brown, kidnapped Lape, drove him to New Madrid County where they beat him. After getting his financial information, bank accounts and PINs, they took turns digging his grave. They shot Lape, killing him, and buried him.

Gill has been in prison since confessing to Cape Girardeau authorities. Brown was sentenced to life in prison in 2006.

Gill’s case was overturned in 2010 and the venue of the retrial was relocated to Boone County. The new jury sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole or probation.

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