3 murdered, 2 crime scenes, 1 killer sentenced in connection

REDDING, Calif. - Joshua McCormick heard his fate Friday, inside a courtroom filled with his victim's family members.

McCormick was sentenced by a judge to 150 years, to life in prison.

In April, McCormick took at plea deal with Shasta County prosecutors, meaning he admitted guilt for the murder of three people. Those killings happened just a few weeks apart.

McCormick, along with Rebecca Wilson, were charged with the murders of Tommy Burton and Michael Forsyth.

Shasta County investigators said McCormick and Wilson shot and killed 65-year-old Thomas James Burton and 57-year-old Michael Cass Forsyth on Oct. 25, 2013 in Ingot, then left their bodies in a building they set on fire.

Shasta County investigators called those killings a robbery gone wrong.

Both Burton and Forsyth were killed with a shotgun stolen from the property.

A man by the name of Eric Ratledge had witnessed those murders.
Less than two weeks later, Sunday, Nov. 3, around 7 a.m.; CAL FIRE responded to reports of a grass fire on the 8800 block of Bass Pond Drive in Millville.
There, firefighters found a pickup truck engulfed in flames. While extinguishing the fire, they found human remains later identified as Ratledge.
Ratledge was shot at least once and determined to be the victim of homicide.
Friday, family members of Tommy Burton, Michael Forsyth and Eric Ratledge were in court to hear McCormick's fate.

McCormick had a smug smirk on his face as loved ones of those killed read aloud how the murders have changed their lives, forever.

McCormick's demeanor changed when Eric Ratledge's girlfriend and mother of their little boy, began her statement.

She explained how their son will never get to have precious memories with his father, like learning how to play catch.
McCormick and Ratledge were considered friends before McCormick murdered him.

McCormick was prepared, paper in hand, to read a statement to his victim's family members in court.

But after hearing what his victim's loved ones had to say to him, McCormick changed his mind. He shook his head and muttered ‘no' to his attorney about reading his own thoughts aloud on why he committed the murders.

McCormick was then led out in shackles, to spend the rest of his life, contained to a prison cell.

The other two accused killers, Wilson and Willis, are both set to stand trial for murder in October.

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