Jackson County authorities charged a 56-year-old homeless man Tuesday in the death of another homeless man.
Michael J. Gullett faces first-degree murder and armed criminal action charges in the Sept. 8 slaying of Joe Loehr, 52.
According to court records, police were called to a homeless camp in a wooded area near Front Street and North Kansas Avenue, north of the levee along the Missouri River in Kansas City.
Officers found Loehr’s body sprawled on the ground. Gullett also was there and had blood spatter on his face, legs and clothing, according to court records.
A witness told police that Gullett and the victim were the only two in the camp and had been drinking together. Loehr died of blunt and sharp force trauma. Court records contend testing found that blood on Gullett’s body and clothing came from the victim.
At the time, police investigated whether Gullett beat Loehr.
Gullett was taken into custody for questioning in the case but was released. He was arrested in November on an unrelated assault.
| Glenn E. Rice and Christine Vendel, The Star