Man pleads no contest to April murders

Wilson faces life sentence for Gardenway shooting

By The Mercury

A Manhattan man accused of murder pleaded no contest to his charges on Friday.

Matthew Wilson, 43, entered the plea to first-degree murder, two charges of attempted first-degree murder and two charges of aggravated battery for crimes that occurred April 7 at an apartment at 900 Garden Way.

According a report from Riley County prosecutor Barry Wilkerson, Wilson fatally shot Fort Riley soldier Michael Lowery and injured several other people as they were leaving Gardenway after a party.

On Friday April 6, Alexya Mailea, Christine Kim and Lowery went to Dustin Ferguson and Joel Solano’s residence at 900 Garden Way, No. 9, to watch movies and hang out with Ferguson.

The state alleges that at 4 a.m. April 7, Wilson started shooting at Lowery, Ferguson, Mailea and Kim as they exited the apartment. Solano was asleep in the apartment at the time with his partner and their child.

Wilson lived in 900 Garden Way, No. 10, and complained to a witness in his case that he was tired of the men partying.

Wilkerson’s report said Kim ran down the stairs out into the parking lot after being shot and Wilson approached her, saying he was only after the men.

The three other people ran back into Ferguson’s apartment — where Wilson shot his way in.

Lowry was killed by two bullets and Ferguson jumped out a window after he was struck by a bullet. Mailea was also shot, but Wilson didn’t injure Solano and his family.

Wilson’s sentencing is set for 4 p.m. on Dec. 12. 

He faces life in prison with parole elgiibilty after 25 years for the first-degree murder charge.

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