The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

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December 7, 2012

Indiana County man pleads to killing wife and girls; gets life

INDIANA — A western Pennsylvania man sobbed as he pleaded guilty to murdering his estranged wife and two young daughters, after which he was immediately sentenced to three consecutive life prison terms.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports 41-year-old Lewis Beatty was crying as he told an Indiana County judge Friday, “This should’ve never happened. I’m very, very remorseful and I’m sorry.”

District Attorney Patrick Dougherty (DOH’-er-tee) had previously said he would pursue the death penalty in the June 1 killings, then surprisingly announced earlier this week that Beatty would plead guilty.

Beatty had also been charged with arson and animal cruelty for allegedly burning his home, where his daughters were killed, and his estranged wife’s residence after fatally shooting the family’s pet pony, goat and dog.

Beatty choked and slashed the throats of 33-year-old Christine Beatty and their girls.

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