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Sanders sentenced to 30 years
By: Lynn LaRowe - Texarkana Gazette
ROCKWALL, Texas—A Bowie County man received 30 years in prison for murder in the hit-and-run death of Texarkana, Texas, police officer Jason Sprague last year.Justin Miles Sanders, 22, must serve at least half his sentence before he is eligible for parole.The jury returned a verdict on Sanders’ punishment after more than five hours of deliberation Wednesday. He was found guilty of murder Monday evening.Sprague, 30, was the first officer dispatched in response to a disturbance call reporting fighting and drug use by a large group at Grady T. Wallace Park not long after midnight June 14. Sprague suffered catastrophic injury to his brain, multiple fractured ribs, a broken leg, a torn heel, cuts and scrapes when he was run over in the closed park.The case was moved to Rockwall County by 102nd District Judge Bobby Lockhart because of concern pretrial publicity and Sprague’s status as a police officer killed in the line of duty would make getting a fair trial in Bowie County questionable.See Thursday's edition of the Texarkana Gazette for in depth coverage of the case.