Montana man shoots friend dead with military-style AR-15 rifle while tripping on mushrooms, faces 25 years in prison
A psilocybin mushroom trip ended badly for two friends in Billings, Montana, last year after they decided "they couldn’t handle it anymore, and they decided to shoot themselves." While 25-year-old John Smathers was fatally shot with a military-style AR-15 rifle, 30-year-old William Eugene Kenney survived his injuries and now faces a 25-year prison sentence.
Prosecutors are now asking for a 25-year prison sentence for Kenney as a part of a plea deal.
According to a report in Billings Gazette, Kenney pleaded guilty to negligent homicide on June 28. As a part of this deal, prosecutors will ask for 30 years prison sentence to Montana State Prison with five years suspended with 30 years being the maximum possible penalty.
Kenney is free to argue for a lesser sentence in the case, however, none was noted in the plea agreement.
The charges state that Kenney told the police later that he and his friend had gotten high on mushrooms and "they couldn’t handle it anymore, and they decided to shoot themselves."
Kenney also added that he remembers shooting Smathers with an AR-15 and himself before passing out. It was Kenney's father who had found the two of them in the basement of the home where Kenney lived.
25-year-old John Smathers was fatally shot by Kenney, according to an identification provided by the Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office.
His body was discovered in November 2018.
While Kenney was sent to the hospital with a gunshot wound to his chin with the bullet going behind his eye and exiting at the top of his head, Smather died from the single gunshot wound according to the autopsy with an entry at the back of his head.
Kenney is currently jailed in the Yellowstone County Detention Facility with a $50,000 bond.