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Topeka man given Hard 25 life sentence for fatally shooting man 7 years ago at local bar


TOPEKA, Kansas — A Topeka man who has been convicted twice of fatally shooting an unarmed patron at a local bar seven years ago has been sentenced to life for premeditated first-degree murder.

James Arthur Qualls III killed 30-year-old Joseph "Joe Bob" Beier Jr. of Topeka in the early morning hours of July 16, 2008, at the Whiplash Bar.

The Topeka Capital-Journal ( ) reports the dispute was caused by a disagreement over a pool game between Qualls and Beier's girlfriend.

Qualls has had 11 defense attorneys since his case started in 2008. He tried to fire his 11th attorney during Monday's sentencing but a Shawnee County district court judge denied that request.

He was given a "Hard 25" sentence, meaning he won't be eligible for parole until he serves at least 25 years.

Information from: The Topeka (Kan.) Capital-Journal,

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