SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A 21-year-old St. Louis man originally charged with second-degree murder in the death of a Springfield teen has pleaded guilty to tampering with evidence and was placed on probation for five years.
Justin Bartels, who police did not believe was the shooter in the incident but was thought to have aided the shooter, was sentenced to four years in prison, but the execution of the sentence was suspended in favor of probation.
On April 17, 2023, police found 18-year-old Lavelle C. Rose shot to death in the passenger seat of a car at Calhoun Street and Forest Avenue.
The driver of the car was also shot. She was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Investigators say Bartels drove a 2010 white, extended cab Chevrolet Silverado from the scene of the incident. When interviewed by officers, Bartels claimed he was looking for a friend’s house when he was confronted at gunpoint by a man he had never met.
Bartels later made a phone call from the Greene County Jail where he admitted to being at the scene of the crime but did not shoot Rose.
Bartels was out on bond at the time of the incident for unlawful use of a weapon and assault charges.
The man believed to have fired the fatal shots is Xavier Moore. He was charged in April, but fled the city and was not located until late June in Chicago.
Moore is charged with first-degree murder in the case and is next scheduled in Greene County Circuit Court on Nov. 20, 2023.