Neelyville man given two life sentences in 2016 shootings

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

TROY, Mo. — A Neelyville man was sentenced to consecutive life sentences Friday afternoon after pleading guilty to the 2016 shooting deaths of two people whose bodies were found by firefighters inside a travel trailer.

Nicholas L. Suiter pleaded guilty as charged to two Class A felonies of first-degree murder and was sentenced to two life sentences without the possibility of parole, according to a court official.

The 34-year-old pleaded guilty to the deaths of Jimmy Lavoid Atchley, 70, of Wappapello and Nancy Sisco, 48, of Neelyville.

Suiter, the court official said, also pleaded guilty to the Class D felony of second-degree arson and the Class C felony of second-degree burglary and received a seven-year sentence on each charge.

Presiding Circuit Judge Terry Tschannen for the Ninth Judicial Circuit ordered all of Suiter’s sentences to be served consecutive to one another, the court official said. Suiter’s case was moved from Wayne County to Lincoln County on a change of venue.

As part of plea negotiations, the state dismissed Suiter’s remaining charges — two unclassified felonies of armed criminal action.

Suiter, who would have faced the death penalty had his case gone to trial, reportedly admitted to committing all the crimes.

“When confronted with the facts, he agreed,” the court official said.

Atchley’s grandson and daughter-in-law were present for Suiter’s plea, and his daughter-in-law made a victim impact statement to the court, the court official said.

According to earlier reports, Atchley and Sisco were found inside his travel trailer after a fire was seen and reported by a neighbor between 5 and 5:30 a.m. Oct. 8, 2016.

When firefighters with the Wappapello Fire Department arrived, they reportedly found a camper and four-wheeler fully engulfed.

Two burnt bodies, later identified as Atchley and Sisco, were found after the fire was put out. Subsequent autopsies showed both had been shot.

A home on the property, owned by Atchley’s son also was burglarized and between 20 and 30 guns allegedly were stolen.

As the investigation progressed, Suiter and Felicia Crumley reportedly were developed as persons of interest. Suiter was Sisco’s cousin.

The pair subsequently were arrested and interviewed.

Both, according to Wayne County Sheriff Dean Finch’s probable-cause statement, admitted to burglarizing the mobile home.

“Mr. Suiter admitted to shooting both victims and setting the travel trailer on fire,” Finch said.

Crumley initially denied any knowledge about the deaths, but later provided information as to where the victims had been shot.

In June 2019, Crumley, 29, was sentenced to seven years in the Missouri Department of Corrections on the Class C felony of second-degree burglary. She had been convicted of the charge three months earlier following a two-day jury trial in Iron County.

The same jury also acquitted Crumley of two Class felonies of second-degree murder and the Class D felony of second-degree arson.

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