A St. Louis man reached a plea deal in last year’s killing of a homeless man at the Busch Stadium MetroLink stop and was sentenced to 12 years in prison.
Marvin Anthony Burt Jr., 20, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, attempted robbery, second-degree assault and 3 counts of armed criminal action on March 19, 2017, murder of Mac Payne. Burt was sentenced by St. Louis Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The fatal shot was fired from a handgun that went off as Burt and another man, Warren Whitehead, robbed two men near Busch Stadium inside a MetroLink train, police said.
Police said Burt pistol-whipped a 29-year-old man in the face and demanded money while Whitehead demanded money from the victim’s 51-year-old father. Police said Whitehead stole cigarettes from the older man’s pocket and punched him in the face, according to AP News.
The handgun went off during the assault. Payne, 57, was outside the train on the station platform when he was shot in the chest, according to police.
The attackers fled. They had been among 6 people who boarded the train in East St. Louis. Police released photos of the group, and within hours, all 6 had been identified.
Payne was taken to a hospital, where he died. The man and son attacked the train stayed aboard and met with police at the Central West End station. They were treated at a hospital and released.
Whitehead, now 22, faces charges of second-degree murder, armed criminal action, and second-degree robbery. His trial is set for June 18, 2018.
Payne’s wife, Jeanette Payne, filed a wrongful death suit against Bi-State, saying the agency that oversees Metro Transit did not provide adequate security at the MetroLink stop. She said they were married 32 years and had a son.
Payne’s brother told the Post-Dispatch after the homeless man’s death that he supported himself by picking up and selling scrap metal. Arthur Payne described his brother as selfless and “very likable.”
Mac Payne traveled around the city and county a lot. He brought his bike with him on the MetroLink or bus to see family in different parts of the area or to go to different community centers to use the gym and socialize, according to his brother.