HAMILTON, Ohio — The suspect in a drive-by shooting that killed two men in southwestern Ohio has pleaded guilty to aggravated murder to avoid a potential death sentence.

The Hamilton-Middletown Journal-News reports 24-year-old Tony Patete, of Newark, was sentenced Monday to life in prison without parole.

He was accused in the August 2016 shooting deaths of Hamilton residents Orlando Gilbert and Todd Berus, both 25.

Patete didn’t make a statement in court Monday but did turn to face Gilbert’s relatives when one asked him to look toward them to see people whose lives had been affected by his actions.

A woman who was driving with Patete as her passenger when the shooting occurred pleaded guilty to aggravated murder and has agreed to a sentence of 30 years to life in prison.

Information from: MIDDLETOWN: Hamilton-Middletown Journal News , http://www.journal-news.com

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