RALEIGH (WTVD) --Wednesday, one of the four teenagers accused of beating a homeless man to death in Raleigh pleaded guilty to the crime and was sentenced to life in prison.
Angel Sean Muniz took part in the attack on 37-year-old Regynald Jose Brown along the Capital Area Greenway in south Raleigh in November 2012. He'll be eligible for parole in 25 years.
There was some question about Muniz's mental capacity, but before he entered the plea, Muniz had gone through a mental exam and was deemed fit for court.
Muniz's defense attorney tried to tell the judge that Muniz is a changed person.
"There's been a significant change from the 15 year old almost two years ago who was not getting treatment to the older kid on his way to becoming a young man, who has been for two years getting proper care," said the defense attorney.
Raheem Hall and Tereise Massenburg are also charged with first-degree murder in the case. Tyrell Hamilton is charged with second-degree murder.
Raleigh police say the youths were 15 when they hit Brown in the head with a rock, killing him. His body was dumped upside down into a garbage can and half buried near Walnut Creek.
A fifth suspect who was 13 at the time of the attack agreed to testify against the others.
According to prosecutors, the teens were part of a gang called "Big Money Swag" - a subset of the "Cutthroats" gang - and the alleged attacks on Brown and others were a way for the teens to "earn their stars."
State law bars prosecutors from seeking the death penalty in murder cases where the defendants are younger than 18.
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