Posted by: vanhoff | April 6, 2008

Serial Killers Face Phoenix

PHOENIX — One of two suspects charged in a series of random shootings that killed seven people in the Phoenix area pleaded guilty Friday to two counts of first-degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder, Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas said.

 

Samuel Dieteman, 32, also agreed to testify against co-defendant and former roommate Dale Hausner, 35, who is awaiting trial on seven charges of first-degree murder. Thomas said he is still seeking the death penalty against both men.

 

According to the plea agreement, the penalty phase for Dieteman’s case won’t be held until after Hausner’s trial, which now is scheduled to begin in early September. The agreement says Dieteman’s testimony will be considered a mitigating factor when his own sentence is decided.

 

Defense lawyer Maria Schaffer told the AP that during his plea, Dieteman said he fatally shot Claudia Gutierrez-Cruz, 20, in Scottsdale on May 2, 2006. Dieteman also said he assisted in the shooting of Robin Blasnek, 22, on July 30, 2006, as she was walking from her parents’ home to her boyfriend’s house in Mesa.

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