Lutherville woman pleads guilty in fatal shooting of man last year

She agrees to testify against her husband, who was also charged in case

November 13, 2009|By Nick Madigan | nick.madigan@baltsun.com

A 37-year-old Lutherville woman pleaded guilty Thursday to first-degree murder in the death a year ago of a man with whom she was romantically involved, authorities in Baltimore County said.

Keri Lynne Schneider also pleaded guilty to using a handgun to kill Timothy Paul Lekin, 35, of Timonium. Lekin's body was found Nov. 26, 2008, inside his parked BMW on Sparks Valley Road.

Prosecutors said they will recommend that Circuit Judge H. Patrick Stringer sentence Schneider to life imprisonment on the murder count and 20 years, to run concurrently, on the handgun count. No sentencing date has been set.

As part of a plea deal, Schneider agreed to testify against her husband, Elliott R. Schneider, 26, who has also been charged with four counts in connection with Lekin's death, including first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. He is to be tried later.

His wife, who prosecutors said fired the fatal shot, was arrested after evidence at the scene was found to link her to the killing. Police said she had been having a relationship with Lekin and that her husband had found out.

Immediately after the shooting, police said, Schneider called her husband, who picked her up from the crime scene and drove to Hagerstown. She was arrested the following morning by state police in Hagerstown.

In December 2008, Schneider's husband was charged with being an accessory to the crime, a charge that was later dropped in favor of the four more serious counts.

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