Sentencing is underway for the man who entered a guilty plea to murdering two people and injuring a third during a rampage in 2017 at a campground in Miller County.
In March, Gary Sweet, 60, of Rolla, entered a guilty plea for the murders of Sheri and James Parker at the Riverview Campground and RV Park in Lake Ozark. The Parkers' were caretakers at the facility where Sweet had been staying until he was told to leave in October of 2017. Sweet returned to the campground the night of Nov. 8, 2017 and shot the Parkers. The couple was found dead in their bed.
A third person was shot but survived his injuries after being hit by projectiles after Sweet opened fire on the RV where the victim and his wife were staying. The victim was able to call police to say there had been shots fired at the campground. It wasn’t until after police arrived that the Parkers' bodies were discovered.
Sweet was in court on Wednesday for the first of a two-part sentencing hearing that will conclude on July 19. The second phase of the sentencing will be for the defense. Miller County Prosecuting Attorney Ben Winfrey presented the state’s evidence for sentencing on Wednesday.
Prior to the shooting there had been problems between the Parkers', the victim who was injured and Sweet. He had been arrested just weeks prior to the murders for assault.
Sweet was identified from video surveillance of the campground. Sweet was originally taken into custody in Phelps County and transferred to Miller County where he has been held on no bond. Although he denied being at the campground, when officers showed up at his home to question him, the engine of his vehicle was still warm.
The investigation into the double homicide was handled by the Mid-Missouri Crimes Unit and Lake Area Major Case Squad.