CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Boone County man admitted Monday to charges in the death of Michelle Gillispie, whom he said he shot in the head accidentally.
John Edward Hudson, 38, pleaded guilty Monday to voluntary manslaughter for shooting Gillispie "under sudden excitement" moments after he disarmed her of a loaded gun she had pulled out, prosecutors said.
Hudson said that on Jan. 27, Gillispie, 38, was upset about a post that her boyfriend, Mark Southern, wrote on the social networking site Facebook when she pulled out the weapon and said she was going to shoot him, according to Kanawha County assistant prosecutor Jennifer Meadows. Hudson was staying with Southern and Gillispie at their home in Winifrede.
"This is a compromised plea," Meadows said. "Both sides had risk. We ran the risk that they would buy his story and let him go with involuntary manslaughter."
Involuntary manslaughter is a misdemeanor that carries a maximum one-year jail term.
Monday's plea agreement calls for prosecutors to invoke state recidivism laws, which tacks an additional five years to the minimum and maximum range of Hudson's voluntary manslaughter sentence. With the recidivism enhancement, Kanawha Circuit Judge Tod Kaufman may sentence Hudson to eight to 20 years in prison.
In 1999, Hudson served more than five years in federal prison on drug distribution charges.
Prosecutors also agreed to drop two grand larceny charges Hudson faced for reportedly stealing Southern's living room TV, a game system and tools from his garage before taking off in Gillispie's car while the woman lay dead in the bedroom of her house.