MCCOOK, NEB. Two men charged in the killings of 59-year-old Kansas twin brothers pleaded no contest to reduced charges.
Dustin Belmarez, 20, originally from Billings, Mont., smiled Monday as he pleaded no contest in Red Willow District Court to one count of first-degree murder and one count of aiding and abetting second-degree murder.
He originally had been charged with two counts each of first-degree murder, robbery and using a deadly weapon to commit a felony and one count of theft by unlawful taking.
Clyde Wagner, 31, originally from Las Vegas, Nev., pleaded no contest to one count of first-degree murder and one count of aiding and abetting second-degree murder.
Wagner had been charged with two counts each of first-degree murder and robbery and one count of using a deadly weapon to commit a felony.
BELMAREZ and Wagner pleaded no contest to killing Chester and Lester Tucker in May 1990. The Tuckers lived in Winchester, Kan., at the time of the killing.
Lester Tucker was found with a pick hammer in his skull near a tent where the two brothers had been camping at Karrer Park in McCook. His twin brother Chester was found on the other side of the park. Authorities said Chester Tucker had been beaten to death with a sign post.
In exchange for Wagner and Belmarez's no contest pleas, prosecutors agreed not to seek the death penalty and to dismiss all other charges.
Belmarez' sentencing was scheduled for May 17. Wagner's sentencing was scheduled for May 20.
The murder charge normally carries possible penalties of death or life in prison. The robbery charges carry penalties of up to 50 years in prison, and the theft charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $25,000 fine.