Roger Reece Kibbe, dubbed by authorities as the "I-5 Strangler," has pleaded guilty in San Joaquin County to six new counts of murder, including the killings of two Sacramento women.
Kibbe, 70, will be sentenced to consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole, thus avoiding the death penalty.
A news release from the San Joaquin District Attorney's Office said that Kibbe's age and the slow pace of executions in the state were integral factors in prosecutors eschewing the death penalty.
"The decision to not seek the death penalty in this case was not made lightly and is based on several unique factors," the release states. "One such factor is Mr. Kibbe's advanced age."
Also, the statement said, "given the current state of the death penalty in the Ninth Circuit, and California in particular, it is unlikely that a capital sentence would ever been carried out in Mr. Kibbe's case."
There are 685 inmates on California's death row.
Kibbe is scheduled for sentencing on Nov. 5. It is expected that family members of the victims will speak in court at sentencing.
Kibbe was convicted in 1991 of strangling a 17-year-old West Sacramento prostitute and leaving her nude body at Echo Summit. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for the 1987 slaying.
However, he had long been the key suspect in a number of other slayings. Last year, a new San Joaquin County indictment accused him of the murders of Lou Ellen Burleigh in 1977 and the deaths of Barbara Ann Scott, Stephanie Brown, Charmaine Sabrah, Katherine Kelly Quinones and Lora Heedrick -- all in 1986.
At the time of his 1991 conviction, authorities listed the deaths of Heedrick, Brown and Sabrah as "I-5 Strangler" slayings.
Read more at SacBee.com