A 21-year-old Lincoln man accused in the 2017 shooting of a 19-year-old Hastings man was sentenced to 38-40 years in prison on Tuesday in Adams County District Court.
Adams County District Judge Stephen Illingworth sentenced Deante Mullen to 19-20 years for an attempted robbery charge and a consecutive 19-20 years for an accessory to a felony, each a Class 2A felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Mullen pleaded guilty to the charges on Nov. 12, 2019, as part of a plea deal.
In exchange for his plea, prosecutors reduced the charges from first-degree murder and use of a firearm to commit a felony.
Another part of the agreement was that Mullen would testify in the cases of any co-defendants brought to trial, which Mullen did in October.
Prosecutors said Mullen and Harden planned to rob Jose “Joey” Hansen in the early morning hours of Sept. 11, 2017. The attempted robbery led to Hansen’s death in 700 block of West G Street, where he was killed with a single gunshot wound to the back.
Mullen and Daniel Harden, 23, were both charged with first-degree murder and use of a deadly weapon to commit a crime. Prosecutors later added a charge of conspiracy to commit robbery against Harden, whose jury trial concluded Nov. 4, 2019, in Adams County District Court. A jury found Harden not guilty of the murder and weapon charges, but convicted him of the conspiracy charge.
Mullen testified in the case, saying it was his plan to set up a robbery to help another friend, his weapon used in the crime and he was the driver of the vehicle used. He claimed Harden agreed to participate in the robbery, pointed Mullen’s gun at Hansen, and accidentally pulled the trigger.
Harden testified he was at home at the time of the shooting.
Creigh, 23, Mullen’s girlfriend at the time, also testified at Harden’s trial. After the shooting, Creigh said she went back to the scene with Mullen to retrieve a dropped cellphone and package of cigarettes. Creigh also lied to police when questioned about the whereabouts of herself and Mullen at the time of the shooting.
She had been charged with accessory to first-degree murder, a Class 2A felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Creigh’s charge was dropped Nov. 4 to obstructing government operations, a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. She was sentenced Jan. 8 to one year in jail.
Read more in Wednesday's edition of the Hastings Tribune.