North Adams man pleads guilty to killing neighbor

PITTSFIELD, Mass. (AP) — A North Adams man charged with killing his 84-year-old neighbor has been sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty.

David Delratez pleaded guilty on Tuesday in Berkshire Superior Court to a second-degree murder charge in the September 2103 death of Ellen DePaoli, making him eligible for parole after 15 years. He had originally been charged with first-degree murder.

Authorities have said the 42-year-old Delratez was a friend of the woman’s son and a frequent visitor to her home.

Police say after killing his neighbor, Delratez stole her car and fled to Bennington, Vermont, where he was apprehended several days later.

The Berkshire Eagle reports that the defendant apologized in court through his lawyer.

Delratez at first denied killing the woman, saying a drug dealer he knew was responsible.

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