Polson Man Pleads Guilty in Death of Father-in-Law

Desmond Mackay pleaded guilty to mistakenly hitting 67-year-old John Barrows in March 2014

By Dillon Tabish

POLSON — A 37-year-old Polson man has pleaded guilty to mitigated deliberate homicide for killing his father-in-law by hitting him in the head with a hammer.

KERR-AM reports Thursday’s plea is the second time Desmond Mackay pleaded guilty to mistakenly hitting 67-year-old John Barrows in March 2014, causing fatal injuries.

Mackay withdrew his plea in June after District Judge Kim Christopher said she couldn’t accept the plea agreement that reduced the charge to mitigated deliberate homicide and recommended 40 years in prison.

Mackay has said he had been bullied by his brother-in-law and was waiting behind a door to hit him when Barrows walked in instead.

Lake County Attorney Steve Eschenbacher cited prosecutorial discretion in his decision to amend the charge.

Christopher scheduled sentencing for Oct. 29.

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