Rockford's Independent Newspaper

Man sentenced to 10 years in fatal Cliffbreakers shooting

By Jim Hagerty

ROCKFORD — A man acquitted of more than 30 counts of murder in a fatal shooting at Cliffbreakers last year was sentenced to 10 years in prison Friday on a lesser charge.

Sean D. Burks, 32, had initially stood accused of gunning down 34-year-old down Joshua Jamerson during a party at Cliffbreakers Riverside Hotel & Conference Center in the early hours of New Year’s Day 2017. Three other men were wounded.

Burks was acquitted in March of multiple counts of first-degree murder, aggravated battery and aggravated discharge of a firearm but found guilty of unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon.

The 10-year sentence handed down by Judge Donna Honzel was the maximum allowed under state law. Burks was eligible for the maximum sentence because of a federal weapons conviction and one for delivery of marijuana. He must serve 50 percent of his sentence.

Burks is represented by private defense lawyer Elder Granger II, who recommended two years imprisonment.

Burks is lodged in the Winnebago County Jail. He’s due back in court May 11. R.


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