A California man was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole Friday for his role in the death of a Montana sheriff’s deputy.
District Judge Kathy Seeley sentenced Lloyd Barrus to three counts of life in prison after he was found guilty by an accountability jury of the May 2017 premeditated killing of Broadwater County Crimes of Deputy Rep. Mason Moore. Barrus, 66, was also found guilty of two counts of attempted manslaughter after his son shot and killed another police officer’s vehicle.
Marshall Barrus, 38, was fatally wounded in a shootout with officers after a manhunt ended east of Missoula. Defense attorneys argued that Burroughs should have remained at Montana State Hospital because he was delusional and unable to assess the criminality of his actions, the Montana Standard reported.
During Butte’s three-week trial, prosecutors said Lloyd and Marshall Barrus discussed going on a “suicide mission” before the 16-year-old’s early pursuit.
Lloyd Barrus, who was driving, fired a shot that struck Moore, 42, in the face, prosecutors said. Prosecutors said Moore’s car stopped and his voice was captured by his car’s camera, at which point a car pulled up and the occupants fired more shots.
The trial was delayed because prosecutors initially sought the death penalty against Lloyd Barrus before finding him unfit to stand trial. Seely ordered Barrus to be injected with antipsychotics because he refused to take them to treat his paranoia. The Montana Supreme Court upheld the mandatory drug treatment order in January 2020. Burroughs, whose last known address before his arrest was Bakersfield, California, was involved in the March 2000 shootings of law enforcement officers in Nevada and California.
Barrus, his son Jeffrey Barrus and a woman were arrested in California after fleeing Nevada Highway Patrol officers and shooting officers during a 70-mile chase. Their vehicle broke down in the Furnace Creek area and they ducked into the canyon, beginning an 18-hour standoff in Death Valley. They reportedly shot and forced a California Highway Patrol helicopter to land. No one was hurt.