Miranda Kamille Barbour, the self-proclaimed Satanist who claimed to have killed almost two dozen people, unexpectedly pleaded guilty Tuesday in a Pennsylvania court to second-degree murder in the stabbing death of a man she and her husband lured to his death through an online ad. Her husband, Elytte Randle Barbour, who'd been scheduled to testify against her at trial, also pleaded guilty.
Miranda Barbour, 19, and her husband, 22, had pleaded not guilty to criminal homicide, aggravated assault and numerous other charges in the stabbing and strangling of Troy LaFerrara, 42, who was found dead in an alley in November in Sunbury, Pennsylvania. But at what was supposed to have been a routine status hearing Tuesday morning in Northumberland County Court of Common Pleas, they said they'd changed their minds. The new plea means they can't get the death penalty when they're sentenced Sept. 18.
Earlier reports referred to the Barbours as the "Craigslist killers." But prosecutors said in court documents that the couple actually lured LaFerrara through a different site called Seeking Arrangements. Court documents also quoted Elytte Barbour as saying the couple, who had been married only three weeks at the time of the killing, "just wanted to murder someone together." The sensational case drew in the FBI, which reviewed Miranda Barbour's claim to have killed more than 22 other people, most of them in Alaska, as part of her role in a satanic cult. Police said in February that they couldn't substantiate those claims.