Man accused of killing priest says he’ll be spared death

Steven Murray said very little at arraignment in Burke County Superior Court.

ATLANTA (AP) – A man accused of killing a Florida priest in Georgia says he has reached an agreement with prosecutors that will spare him the death penalty.

Steven Murray is charged in the April 2016 shooting death of the Rev. Rene Robert. He told The Associated Press in a call from jail Tuesday evening that he plans to plead guilty at an Oct. 18 hearing in exchange for a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Murray told the AP: “It’s a lot of time, but I deserve it. Father Rene was a good man.”

Murray was a repeat offender Robert had been trying to help. Police said Murray asked the 71-year-old priest for a ride in Jacksonville, Florida, then kidnapped him and killed him in Georgia.

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