A Rigby man who shot and killed his friend over a romantic dispute pleaded guilty Monday to voluntary manslaughter.
Marshall Dee Hendricks, 31, was arrested in September 2019, and originally charged with second-degree murder. Court records state Hendricks shot and killed Rory Neddo after Neddo announced he was going to confront Hendricks, believing his ex-girlfriend was dating Hendricks.
During his allocution, Marshall Dee Hendricks, 31, described the incident to the court.
“On September 2 of 2019, I got into a conflict with a friend of mine, and I was afraid,” Hendricks said.
Hendricks told District Judge Dane Watkins Jr. that he saw Neddo reach to his back, and believed Neddo was going to draw a weapon.
“I didn’t wait for his hand to come back up, and I shot him,” Hendricks said, his voice shaking. “ I killed him.”
Neddo had reportedly threatened Hendricks in a phone conversation before the incident.
During a preliminary hearing in November 2019, Jessica Nielsen, Neddo’s ex-girlfriend, testified that Hendricks had given his location to Neddo in the phone call.
“They talked about fighting, and Marshall told Rory that he was at Hope’s house, to come fight him at Hope’s house,” Nielsen said.
Bonneville County Prosecutor Daniel Clark said Neddo did not have a weapon when he approached Hendricks’ residence.
Nielsen also testified that Hendricks told her before Neddo arrived that he planned to shoot Neddo.
During the hearing, witnesses disagreed on whether Neddo attempted to hit Hendricks before he shot Neddo. Nielsen said Neddo attempted to hit Hendricks. Neddo’s brother, Jason Wessells, said Neddo was too far away to hit Hendricks.
Hendricks also pleaded guilty to a deadly weapon enhancement, increasing the potential 15-year prison sentence for voluntary manslaughter to 30 years. As part of the plea agreement, the prosecution agreed to limit its recommendation to a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison, with a fixed term of 10 years.
Hendricks was on parole at the time of the shooting. He had been arrested in 2017 after leading police on a high-speed chase. The pursuit ended when Hendricks crashed and rolled into a canal near Ririe. Two Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office deputies saved Hendricks from drowning after his vehicle landed upside down in the water.
Hendricks is scheduled to be sentenced at 10 a.m. April 26 in Bonneville County Courthouse.