Sunday, June 30, 2002

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- A man who is under house arrest while awaiting sentencing in a murder case had had enough of his parents. So he volunteered to go to jail -- early.

Michael Kempker II, 20, contacted the Cole County sheriff's department late Tuesday night and said he was having trouble at home. He said he wanted to leave before the situation escalated, Sheriff John Hemeyer said.

The sheriff escorted Kempker back to jail, where he has been well-behaved, Hemeyer said.

Kempker had been under house arrest since Dec. 31, after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in the Nov. 11 beating death of Paul Thrasher, 20. As part of his plea agreement, prosecutors plan to recommend no more than 30 years in prison, as opposed to the maximum of life.

Prosecutors say Thrasher was beaten to death and run over with his own vehicle. His body was found in a ditch near Russellville nearly two days later.

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