September 29, 2016
KANSAS CITY, Missouri – An Independence man was convicted by a Jackson County jury on Wednesday, September 28 of Voluntary Manslaughter and Armed Criminal Action in relation to a deadly October 2014 shooting.
Melvin M. McCaslin, 43, was originally charged with second-degree murder, armed criminal action, and unlawful possession of a firearm in February of 2015, several months after the shooting death of Samuel Hewitt. Court records indicate that McCaslin and Hewitt had previously gotten into an altercation at the 8600 block of Thompson.
A witness was inside Hewitt’s residence at the time of the original altercation, when she saw two men fighting the victim. She went outside to try and break up the fight, but she was subsequently hit in the back of the head by the suspect’s girlfriend. The witness stated that she then saw Hewitt on the ground, lying on his back and unresponsive. At that point, she observed McCaslin approach the victim. McCaslin lifted Hewitt’s head up while pointing a gun at him. Shortly thereafter the witness heard a single gunshot, after which she saw Hewitt bleeding from his head. The witness got Hewitt into a vehicle to get him medical attention, and called 9-1-1.
Authorities conducted an area canvass, during which several neighbors acknowledged seeing several vehicles leaving the scene of the crime. One neighbor said they heard a woman scream, “You shot him.”
McCaslin is scheduled to be sentenced on Friday, November 18, at 3:00 p.m.