Aberdeen man convicted of murder in friend's beating death

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) - A jury has convicted an Aberdeen man of murder for fatally beating a friend in what prosecutors say was a dispute over a $400 debt.

Fifty-six-year-old Bradley Quist was sentenced to life in prison Thursday after the jury found him guilty in the death of 61-year-old Ron Witchey.

In closing arguments Thursday, Brown County prosecutor Chris White said Witchey owed Quist $400 when they left a bar on May 31, 2015.

White said Quist sucker-punched Witchey, knocking him to the ground, then kicked him twice in the head before punching him one last time.

Defense attorney Tom Cogley said Quist acted in self-defense. He said the men were hard-drinking, hard-living friends who would settle their arguments with their firsts and go back to being friends.

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