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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Felon who killed cellmate for sexually abusing his sister gets more than 24 years in prison

UPDATED: Wed., Aug. 4, 2021

Spokane County Courthouse. (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)  (C)
Spokane County Courthouse. (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW) (C)

Shane Goldsby, a 26-year-old inmate who killed his cellmate for sexually abusing his younger sister, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to more than 24 years in prison on top of his current sentence on Tuesday.

Goldsby brutally beat his 70-year-old cellmate, Robert Munger, to death in June 2020. Munger was serving a 43-year sentence for convictions of child rape, child molestation and possession of child pornography.

Goldsby, who was captured on video stomping on his cellmate’s head, said he did it because Munger had abused Goldsby’s younger sister years before the incident.

In total, Goldsby will serve more than 25 years in prison and will be subject to three years of parole after his prison time is over. Goldsby also will need to pay restitution to Munger’s family, with the figure to be decided at a future time.

The sentence, which could have been as long as 33 years, was recommended by the prosecution and defense as part of a plea agreement.

The end result of more than 25 years in prison was designed to ensure that Munger’s wife would not be alive to see Goldsby finish his sentence, according to the prosecuting attorney.

At the sentencing hearing, Goldsby was unable to read an apology because he was too overcome with emotion. His lawyer, Victoria Lynn Blumhorst, read it for him.

“I’m ashamed of my actions, I was put into a situation that I don’t wish on nobody,” Blumhorst said in Goldsby’s stead. “I got a lot of fixing to do.”

Blumhorst said during the hearing that Goldsby was abused by his drug-addicted mother, sometimes chaining him outside like an animal.

Goldsby went through 10 different foster homes after child services rescued him, but his mother eventually reconnected and started using drugs with him, according to Blumhorst during the hearing.

Goldsby was in prison by 22 and in the intensive management unit but worked his way out of the unit before being transferred to Airway Heights prison, where he encountered Munger.

A Washington State Patrol investigation months after the incident found that there was little prison staff could have done to prevent the murder.

The investigation said that, because of issues like different last names of family members, there was no reason to suspect that Goldsby and Munger knew each other when they were placed in the same cell. Staff had no idea of the connection between the two until after the murder, according to the investigation.

Washington state Department of Corrections said that all protocols were followed in the events leading up to the incident.

Judge Maryann Moreno oversaw the sentencing, and said she hopes that Goldsby can reform himself after his prison sentence is over.

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