MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) -- A judge has approved a plea deal that lets a Murfreesboro man avoid a first-degree murder trial in the beating death of his mother.
Roger Van Blarcom entered a guilty plea to second-degree murder in a deal with prosecutors that calls for him to serve a 30-year prison term, according to the Associated Press.
Loraine Van Blarcom was beaten with a baseball bat, but was able to tell police at the hospital that her son beat her after asking if she wanted to go to Heaven. The 81-year-old victim died about a week after the October 2009 incident in her home.
Roger Van Blarcom had been scheduled to stand trial on Tuesday.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)