Man pleads guilty to killing officer

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) -- A man charged with killing a Chattanooga police officer during a pawn shop robbery last year has entered a guilty plea.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press ( reports Jesse Mathews avoided a death penalty trial by entering the plea Friday in Hamilton County Criminal Court. Instead, he was sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 25 years.

District Attorney Bill Cox said the sentence is long enough that Mathews will likely die behind bars for fatally shooting police Sgt. Tim Chapin, who had responded to the robbery at the U.S. Money Shops store.

Matthews had come to the area last year to meet family after fleeing from a Colorado halfway house.

Mathews will not be able to appeal under terms of the agreement.

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