JONESBORO, Ark. – The case of a murder on New Year’s Day, 2019 at a barbershop in Jonesboro was completed Friday night.
Markus Gentry, 30, of Blytheville, was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to life in prison plus 50 years for the murder of Lewis C. Gamble, 35, of Jonesboro.
Gentry was charged as a habitual offender with four prior violent felony convictions. In addition, an enhanced sentence was sought for use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
Authorities said the shooting happened at Big Unk’s Barbershop, 1120 West Huntington, on New Year’s Day, 2019. Gamble was shot multiple times, taken to a local hospital, and later died.
The defense attorney for Gentry argued that he acted in self-defense. Gentry testified the two were discussing a personal issue at the barbershop when things went sour. According to Gentry, Gamble shot him first. Gentry said he returned fire in self-defense.
The jury imposed a life in prison sentence for the conviction, with an enhancement of 10 years for use of a firearm. Following the verdicts, Circuit Judge Cindy Thyer heard two different felony petitions to revoke Gentry’s prior probationary sentence. Thyer granted both petitions to revoke and sentenced Gentry to an additional 40 years imprisonment, for a total of life in prison without parole, plus fifty years.
Craighead County Deputy Prosecuting Attorneys Charlene Henry, Grant DeProw, and Tiarra Tanner brought the case for the state. Gentry was defended by Garfield Bloodman.