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Kansan Sentenced In Scheme That Led To Arson Death

Associated Press - August 13, 2013 7:57 am

The Kansas Supreme Court has reversed the "Hard 50" murder sentence of a Wichita man but refused to rule whether changes made by legislators to the law in 2013 can be applied.

The Kansas Supreme Court has reversed the "Hard 50" murder sentence of a Wichita man but refused to rule whether changes made by legislators to the law in 2013 can be applied.

A man involved in a convenience store robbery that set off a chain of events leading to the death of a Kansas State University researcher has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison.

23-year-old Frank Joseph Hanson of Manhattan pleaded guilty earlier this year to brandishing a weapon during a robbery at the convenience store in Manhattan. Hanson was sentenced Monday to 42 months in prison.

After the robbery, two other people set a fire at a Manhattan apartment complex to distract police investigating the robbery. The fire killed 34-year-old Vasanta Pallem, a postdoctoral researcher in chemical engineering at Kansas State.

Hanson was one of five people charged in incidents Feb. 6 that led to the fire. Three others have been sentenced, one awaits trial.

Associated Press information from: KAKE-TV

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