Lawyers for convicted serial killer William Devin Howell say he pleaded guilty to spare the families of the Connecticut victims further emotional pain.
Attorneys Jeffrey Kestenband and William Paetzold issued a statement after Howell pleaded guilty on Friday to six counts of murder. They also said avoiding a trial will save state taxpayers nearly $1 million.
Howell pleaded guilty in New Britain Superior Court. He is expected to be sentenced Nov. 17 to 360 years in prison.
The 47-year-old native of Hampton, Virginia, had previously been convicted of manslaughter in a seventh victim's death and sentenced to 15 years in prison.
The seven victims - six women and a man - were all killed in 2003. Their bodies were found buried behind a strip mall in New Britain.
The guilty pleas confirm Howell is the most prolific serial killer in state history. Police say he drove a van he called the "murder mobile."
State’s Attorney for the Judicial District of New Britain, Brian Preleski, talked about the importance of the Greater New Britain Serial Murder Task Force, which came together for this case.
“We express our sincere thanks to all who have worked so long and so hard on this difficult investigation, and we again express our deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of these innocent victims,” Preleski said in a statement on Friday.
The Greater New Britain Serial Murder Task Force included members of the New Britain, Hartford, Wethersfield, Waterbury and East Hartford police departments, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of the Chief State's Attorney and the Office of the State's Attorney for the Judicial District of New Britain.
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