A member of the Irish Mob prison gang avoided trial Monday by pleading guilty to a first-degree murder charge.

Ricky Lynn Appleton, 38, agreed to a sentence of life in prison for killing Charles Wertz in 2016 as part of an arrangement with Oklahoma County prosecutors.

”I conspired to commit murder and to deal drugs,” Appleton wrote in court paperwork. “I also acted with others to cause the death of Charles Wertz by shooting him with a firearm.”

Two others were charged in the shooting. A jury found Christina Louise Smith, 33, not guilty in March on charges of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. A charge of first-degree murder against Tyler Gregory Pate, 32, was dismissed in 2017, though he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess a controlled substance.

Read the full story online at Oklahoman.com. (Some stories require a subscription.)

— Tim Willert,

The Oklahoman

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