It took a Kiowa County jury less than an hour Wednesday to return a guilty verdict against a 31-year-old Hobart man charged with murder.
Jordan Michael Heathco was found guilty of two felony counts: first-degree murder and shooting with intent to kill.
"Heathco shot and killed 24-year-old Benjamin Keith Wagner Zotigh of Hobart on the evening of Jan. 4, 2011, at a residence at 919 West Third Street in Hobart," District Attorney John Wampler said. "He then turned the gun on Matthew Dean and fired at him while Dean was wrestling the gun away from him."
Wampler said the trial primarily focused on Heathco's mental state at the time of the shooting because the defense asked the jury to find Heathco not guilty by reason of insanity.
The evidence presented to the jury showed that Heathco was invited to the residence where several friends were gathered, Wampler said. Within 30 minutes Heathco suddenly stood up from the table, without any altercation or provocation, and shot Zotigh five times and then turned and shot at Dean, Wampler said. He then left the residence and drove to the Kiowa County Sheriff's Office, where he turned himself in and told officers "I have killed several people."