CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – Allen Ford, one of five original suspects in the 2009 murder of Andrew Graham, was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Friday. Ford pleaded guilty in November 2019 in an agreement with prosecutors in Arapahoe County District Court.
Prosecutors are still trying to resolve the more-than-a-decade-old murder case. Ford, 28, pleaded guilty to one count of racketeering in connection with Graham’s murder.READ MORE: Park Hill Residents File Lawsuit Against Safe Outdoor Space For Homeless In Church Parking Lot
Graham’s mother, Cyndi Gelston-Graham, was in the courtroom for the sentencing and gave an emotional victim’s impact statement.
Graham, 23, was shot and killed in 2009 as he returned to his home in Centennial from an RTD light rail station. His body was found the next morning. Investigators believe Graham, who was shot in the back, was a robbery target.READ MORE: Busy Friday Night In Downtown Denver Could Signal Trend Toward Post-Pandemic Life
Investigators zeroed in on five suspects who they believed were involved in Graham’s death: Ford, Kendall Austin, Joseph Martin, Clarissa Lockhart and Terrell Jones. Police believe Jones was the actual shooter but he has never been arrested or charged. The other four were arrested and jailed in January of 2017 following grand jury indictments. The four were indicted on felony murder, conspiracy and racketeering charges as prosecutors theorized they were present for the robbery and shooting.
Joseph Martin agreed to a plea bargain in the case in 2018 and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. Charges against Austin were dropped in October 2019 due to a lack of forensic evidence and other factors.MORE NEWS: Colorado's Comeback: Moviegoers Return To Regal Theatres Amid COVID Safety Protocols
Clarissa Lockhart is still facing charges, but prosecutors’ ultimate goal appears to be filing charges and bringing Terrell Jones, the suspected triggerman, to trial. Ford’s plea agreement gets them one step closer. In exchange to pleading guilty to one count of racketeering, the other two counts against him were dropped and he agreed to a 20-year prison term. He is also expected to assist prosecutors and police in their effort to bring a case against Jones.