Women sentenced to 14 years in Topeka homicide

Jail bars (KSN File Photo)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Topeka woman has been sentenced to 14 years and one month in prison for her role in the shooting death in Topeka of man and the wounding of the victim’s fiancee, which was followed by a shootout with Nebraska authorities as she and her husband tried to escape.

Jamie Engstrom, 36, was sentenced Friday for conspiracy to commit second-degree murder, aggravated battery and aggravated child endangerment in the Feb. 13, 2013 death of Ricky Mitchell, 34, and the wounding of 28-year-old Bridget Gakle of Topeka.

Engstrom and her husband, Michael Engstrom, 34, of Gardner, were arrested later that day after a police chase near St. Mary, Nebraska, during which Michael Engstrom shot at officers. The couple was fleeing after robbing a business in neighboring Pawnee County, Nebraska. Jamie’s Engstrom’s child was with the couple during the chase.

Jamie Engstrom’s sentence in Kansas will run concurrently with sentences she received in August 2013 in the Nebraska crimes, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

Michael Engstrom was sentenced to life in prison with parole eligibility after 20 years for felony first-degree murder and other charges in the Topeka shootings, which also will run concurrently with sentences he received in Nebraska.

Court records say that the Engstroms had smoked methamphetamine with the victims on the day of the murders. Michael Engstrom shot the victims after becoming agitated when Mitchell couldn’t contact a drug dealer.

Jamie Engstrom will first complete her sentence in Nebraska then will be transferred to Kansas to finish that sentence.

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