BRIGHTON, Colo. (KDVR) — A 22-year-old will spend 35 years behind bars for murdering a man during a drug deal and then dumping his body in a field.
According to the 17th Judicial District Attorney’s Office for Adams and Broomfield counties, Christopher Matthews, 22, was convicted of second-degree murder in the death of 20-year-old Tanner Banderet.
Back on Aug. 13, 2020, Matthews, who was 20 years old at the time, picked up Banderet from an apartment complex in Westminster to complete a cocaine deal.
According to the DA, as Matthews was driving his Cadillac near 116th Avenue and Pecos Street, he grabbed his handgun and pointed it at Banderet. Matthews fired a single shot that struck the victim behind his left ear.
While the victim was suffering from the gunshot wound, Matthews threw his shirt over Banderet’s head and drove to a field along West 84th Avenue. The DA said that Matthews dumped the victim’s body in the field.
Before leaving, the DA said Matthews emptied Banderet’s pockets and stole some cash, cocaine, and the victim’s identification.
“This defendant destroyed a life,” said District Attorney Brian Mason. “He will now serve a lengthy sentence for this serious crime. I am grateful to my team at the DA’s Office for their hard work on this challenging case and to the jury for returning a just verdict.”
During the trial, the jury ultimately rejected the self-defense claim.
Matthews was charged with second-degree murder and will spend 35 years in the Department of Corrections.