Lillelid Murder Suspects Plead Guilty

Thursday, February 20, 2098

Criminal Court Judge James Beckner heard all six suspects in the April 1997 murder of Vidar, Delphinia, and Tabitha Lillelid, and the attempted murder of Peter Lillelid, plead guilty Friday in a Greene County Courtroom.

The defendants agreed to enter guilty pleas after the state agreed not to seek the death penalty.

District Attorney General Berkeley Bell commented on the plea.

(Bell voicer #2...oc...of day)(:18)

Bell told reporters Friday had the case gone to trial, the states contention would have been that Jason Blake Bryant was the shooter.

(Bell voicer #3...oc...sentencing)(:26)

Sentencing for Natasha Wallen Cornett, Joseph Paul Risner, Crystal Renea Sturgill, Edward Dean Mullins, Jason Blake Bryant, and Karen Renee Howell on the murder and attempted murder convictions will be March 2.

The judge Friday sentenced each on the other charges of Especially Aggravated Kidnapping (25 years in prison on each count), Aggravated Kidnapping (12 years on each count), and Theft (4 years in prison). Those sentences will run concurrently.

General Bell says the state will ask that all six receive the maximum sentence of life in prison on all three murder charges, and that the state will ask that those be served consecutively and without possibility of parole.