West Campus murder accomplices sentenced to prison

Aziza Musa and Lena Price

Two men accused of assisting in the 2009 murder of two UT alumni pleaded guilty to their charges today.

Samuel Gifford, 20, received a 50-year sentence, and Roy Renick, 22, received a 35-year sentence. Both men helped plan and implement the murders of former West Campus residents Stacy Barnett and Jonathon Goosey.

On July 21, 2009, James “Ricky” Thompson entered Barnett and Goosey’s apartment, where he fatally shot them multiple times in their heads. According to court documents, Goosey sold marijuana to Thompson, who accumulated nearly $8,000 in debt. Thompson “was looking to clear his debt,” according to arrest affidavits.

Gifford, Thompson’s roommate, drove him to the apartment and back that morning. Renick built a homemade silencer and helped cover up the murders, according to the affidavit.

Thompson was sentenced to life in prison in August 2010, and police arrested Gifford and Renick shortly afterward.

Gifford received two concurrent 50-year sentences and will be eligible for parole after 25 years. Renick, who cooperated with police following his arrest, received a shorter sentence.

Gifford’s attorney David Sheppard and Renick’s attorney Kent Anschutz could not be reached for comment as of press time.