One of the suspects charged in connection with a 2009 Granite City murder has been sentenced to 20 years in prison. 25-year old Vincent R. Blue of Collinsville was set for trial next week but chose to accept a plea deal in exchange for the minimum sentence and the condition that prosecutors would drop an additional murder charge and a count of armed robbery that had been levied against him.

Authorities say that Blue and his co-defendent Jason Hawkins, who pled guilty to similar charges in January 2012, agreed to meet with 19-year old Stephen Nemsky in Granite City to sell him marijuana in December 2009 but that they actually planned to rob him instead. During the meeting Nemskey was robbed of an undisclosed amount of cash and shot once through the neck. He died at the scene.

Police say there was evidence that Hawkins was the one who pulled the trigger. He was ordered to serve 35 years in prison. Both men will have to serve 100% of their sentences.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio /