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Man sentenced to 50 years for murder in bar fight

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Posted at 8:10 AM, May 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-23 09:10:45-04

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -- A man who had said he was only defending himself when he beat another man at a central Iowa bar has been given 50 years in prison.

Polk County District Court records say 49-year-old Rodney Henricksen was sentenced last week for killing Joshua Sadlon. Sadlon, of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, died a day after the incident at the Escape Lounge in Urbandale in January 2018. A jury found Henricksen guilty of second-degree murder.

Henricksen had said he'd tried to de-escalate threats made by the drunken Sadlon and said Iowa's "stand your ground" law protected him from prosecution. The law says a person doesn't have to retreat before using deadly force if he or she reasonably thinks his or her life is being threatened.

The jury rejected his claim of self-defense. Prosecutors called it a bar beating, not a bar fight.

AP-WF-05-23-19 1034GMT