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Man pleads guilty to killing 3 in burglaries in Phoenix area

Posted at 11:27 AM, Jan 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-29 13:27:48-05

PHOENIX (AP) - A man has pleaded guilty to murder in the deaths of a cigar salesman in Phoenix and a couple from an upscale suburb in burglaries seven years ago that ended with the victims being killed and their homes set on fire.

The plea agreement made Monday by 38-year-old Michael Lee Crane of Mesa calls for him to serve three consecutive life sentences in the January 2012 killings of Bruce Gaudet and Lawrence and Glenna Shapiro.

As a part of the plea, prosecutors agreed to drop their effort to seek the death penalty against Crane.

Authorities say Crane bound and fatally shot the three victims at their homes, stole their jewelry and other valuables, and set their houses on fire.

The Shapiros were killed four days after Gaudet.