BEDFORD — Mark Shirey, 45, pleaded guilty to first degree murder this morning in the March 27, 2011, shooting death of Michael Simpson in Simpson's Bedford County home.
The guilty plea allows Shirey to escape the death penalty, which Bedford County District Attorney William Higgins announced he would seek if Shirey were convicted at trial.
Police believe Shirey either broke into Simpson’s Centerville house or followed him inside through an attached garage and killed him.
Simpson, who lived alone, had been dating Shirey's ex-wife Karen Bennett for a few years prior to the murder in late March 2011.
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