Bend murder suspect pleads guilty

The man suspected of killing a 23-year-old woman in July 2016 changed his plea to guilty on Monday. The mother of the victim posted on social media that he did so to avoid the death sentence.

Posted: Jan. 22, 2018 10:49 AM
Updated: Jan. 22, 2018 8:02 PM

BEND, Ore. -- The man suspected in the 2016 murder of a Bend woman has pleaded guilty.

Officials with the Deschutes County District Attorney's Office said Edwin Lara, changed his plea on Monday.

The former Central Oregon Community College security guard is accused of killing Kaylee Sawyer, 23, in July 2016 and later kidnapping a woman in Salem. Authorities said he then drove to California, where he allegedly shot and injured a man and carjacked a vehicle with a family inside.

Kaylee Sawyer's mother posted on Facebook that Lara agreed to a plea deal to avoid a possible death sentence.

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