A second life sentence has been given to a Platte County man for his actions surrounding a large meth lab operation.
This time, the man has been sentenced to life in prison for shooting at police officers as he fled from an explosion of one of the largest meth labs in Kansas City history.
Bryan G. Leonard, 33, of Riverside, pled guilty and was sentenced on Thursday in Platte County Circuit Court.
Thursday’s action came two days after Leonard received another life sentence in federal court for multiple charges relating to the manufacture of methamphetamine. The federal court action was reported in last week’s Landmark.
Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd said, “This case is a prime example of the entire law enforcement community–local, state and federal–working together to put a very dangerous man in prison for the rest of his life. Law enforcement agencies at every level came together to make certain this man paid a steep price for his many crimes.”
Leonard was charged in Platte County on Sept. 6, 2007 with three counts of first degree assault of a law enforcement officer for shooting at three members of the Kansas City Metropolitan Drug Task Force. He was also charged with three counts of armed criminal action and a single count of resisting arrest. He was later charged by federal prosecutors as part of a large methamphetamine manufacturing ring.
On Sept. 5, 2007, police officers responded to a call from the Crime Stoppers TIPS Hotline regarding a suspected methamphetamine lab at a residence just north of Park Hill South High School and, when no one answered the door, were in the process of obtaining a search warrant.
Leonard came out of the house shooting at the police officers. An explosion then caused the house to burn to the ground. Leonard was arrested after a high-speed car chase through English Landing Park. No one was injured in the shooting or the explosion.
Judge Abe Shafer sentenced Leonard to life on each of three counts of assault on a law enforcement officer, to 30 years on each of three counts of armed criminal action, and four years for resisting arrest. These sentences are to run concurrent to one another and concurrent with his sentence in federal court.
Leonard and several co-conspirators (see related story in this issue of The Landmark) were sentenced in federal court Aug. 11 in a case centering on conspiracy to manufacture and distribute methamphetamine. Leonard received a life sentence, plus a mandatory sentence of 10 years to be served consecutively.
Zahnd said, “Judge Shafer sent a loud and clear message to those who would use violence against our law enforcement officers: if your shoot at officers in Platte County, you will spend a very long time behind bars.”
The case was investigated by the Metro Drug Task Force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Platte County Sheriff’s Department, the Parkville Police Department, the Riverside Police Department, and the Kansas City, Missouri Police Department.
The state case was prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Chris Seufert, while the federal case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Matt Wolesky, a former Platte County Assistant Prosecutor in Zahnd’s office.