|Ohio inmate gets life in killings of 3 Texas girls|
|By Associated Press|
An Ohio prison inmate has pleaded guilty today to the 1980s slayings of three young Dallas area girls in exchange for a life sentence. The deal allowed him to avoid a possible death penalty.
As part of the plea bargain, David Elliott Penton will finish his prison term in Ohio, where he was serving life for killing a 9 year-old Columbus girl in 1988. He was extradited to Texas in 2003.
Penton was accused of killing 3-year-old Roxann Hope Reyes. The girl was abducted on Nov. 3, 1987. Her scattered remains were found six months later about seven miles away.
He also was indicted in the slayings of Christi Lynn Meeks, 5, of Mesquite, and Christie Diane Proctor, 10, of Dallas. They disappeared in 1985 and 1987, respectively.
For years, Texas law-enforcement officials suspected Penton in the three unsolved killings.
He was honorably discharged from the Army in Killeen in late 1985 and pleaded guilty to the manslaughter death of his 1-month-old son that year.
During an appeal of his that case, he fled.
Penton was taken into custody in Ohio in 1988.
In 2003, a Collin County grand jury indicted him on the three capital murder charges. They would not say what new information linked Penton to the cases.
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