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Michigan man pleads guilty to 6 murders in 2016

In this April 20, 2017  photo, defendant Jason Dalton, left, who is charged with killing six people in-between picking up riders for Uber, stands with attorney Eusebio Solis during a hearing in Kalamazoo, Mich. (Mark Bugnaski / Associated Press)
In this April 20, 2017 photo, defendant Jason Dalton, left, who is charged with killing six people in-between picking up riders for Uber, stands with attorney Eusebio Solis during a hearing in Kalamazoo, Mich. (Mark Bugnaski / Associated Press)
Associated Press

KALAMAZOO, Mich. – A man charged with killing six strangers between picking up rides for Uber pleaded guilty to murder on Monday in Michigan.

Jason Dalton’s surprise move occurred as lawyers and a judge planned to pick a jury in Kalamazoo County court. There was no deal for Dalton: He pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder, and he faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison with no chance for parole.

“I’ve wanted to do this for quite a while,” Dalton told a judge.

He answered “yes” to a series of questions, admitting that he shot eight people at three locations in the Kalamazoo area in 2016. Four women, a man and a 17-year-old boy were killed.

After Dalton’s arrest, police quoted him as saying a “devil figure” on Uber’s app was controlling him on the day of the shootings. He was found competent to stand trial and last week dropped an insanity defense.

Defense attorney Eusebio Solis said he advised Dalton not to plead guilty. But he said his client wanted to spare families more grief during a trial.

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