Ottumwa Man Charged in 2021 Murder Receives Sentence


An Ottumwa man was sentenced to 70 years in prison for a fatal stabbing at a hotel in Ottumwa two years ago.

41-year-old Robert Milford Jr. pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter, first-degree robbery, assault while participating in a felony – serious injury, assault while participating in a felony, and going armed with intent.

Milford was originally charged with first-degree murder and first-degree burglary as well but according to the plea deal, the murder charge was adjudicated to voluntary manslaughter and the burglary charge was dismissed.

In September 2021 at the Stardust Motel on Roemer Avenue, Milford was involved in an argument with 43-year-old Joshua Barnhill and during the disagreement, Milford stabbed Barnhill with a knife. Barnhill was transported to the hospital but succumbed to his injuries.

Last week, Milford was sentenced to 70 years in prison. According to court documents, Milford will be eligible for parole in 26 and a half years.

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