Trucker pleads not guilty to murder plot charges

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- An Illinois truck driver accused of killing at least four women in three states has pleaded not guilty to charges of solicitation to commit first-degree murder.

Susan Niland, a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office, said Bruce Mendenhall entered his plea Wednesday via video to charges that he sought to arrange the murders of two Nashville police detectives and three witnesses while in jail.

Mendenhall, a 57-year-old truck driver from Albion, Ill., is also charged with the June 26, 2007 shooting death of Sara Nicole Hulbert whose body was found at a truck stop along Interstate 24 in Nashville.

He was arrested by detectives the following month and has since been charged with killing three other women in Lebanon, Tenn., Indianapolis, and Birmingham, Ala.

Mendenhall has been held without bond since his arrest.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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