Kansas City man charged in fatal shooting after argument: Prosecutors

A Kansas City man has been charged in the fatal shooting of 23-year-old Ja’Carious McKissic following an argument between the two last month.

Justyn Reedus, 24, faces a charge of second-degree murder, as well as unlawful use of a weapon and two counts of armed criminal action.

McKissic was found with multiple gunshot wounds around 11:30 p.m. on May 31 in the front yard of a home on East 110th Terrace St., according to Kansas City police. He was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.

Reedus and McKissic appear to have known each other before the fatal argument and the two followed each other on social media.

The shooting was witnessed by two people, one of whom lived inside the home on Terrace, according to court documents.

Kansas City police detectives were told that just before the shooting, Reedus and McKissic were arguing inside the home, according to court documents.

A witness told detectives that McKissic tried to disengage from the argument, saying that he’d had enough and gathering his belongings to leave, according to court documents.

Reedus followed McKissic onto the front porch, where he drew a gun, shoved McKissic off the porch and then shot him five times, according to court documents. These acts were captured on video footage reviewed by detectives, according to the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office.

Reedus turned himself in to Kansas City police on June 7, according to court documents.

McKissic — who often went by his nickname, Zelli, or his middle name, Isaiah — played for the Kansas City Bulldogs and the North Kansas City Knights, both minor league football teams in the Midwest Football League. He previously lived in Alabama, where he graduated from high school in 2019.

The Bulldogs held a moment of silence in McKissic’s honor before their most recent game on Monday. McKissic, a wide receiver with several team records, had hoped to play professional football someday, the Knights posted on social media.

“As exceptional Zelli was on the field, he was an even better human being off the field,” the team wrote online on June 3. “Adored by his teammates and friends, he possessed a special gift for bringing smiles to those around him.”

Reedus is being held on a $200,000 cash bond, according to the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office. He will next appear in court at 1:30 p.m. June 17.

McKissic’s death was the 61st homicide reported in Kansas City in 2024, according to data collected by The Star.

By the same time last year, 77 homicides had been reported in the city.