BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A Montana man has started a sentence of life in prison for the fatal shooting of his lodger.

The Billings Gazette reports that 34-year-old Thomas Joseph Schifferns was sentenced July 10 for killing 63-year-old James McGregor.

Schifferns pleaded guilty to deliberate homicide in March for the February 2018 shooting near Red Lodge.

He later sought to withdraw the plea, saying mental health problems caused an involuntarily admission of guilt.

Authorities say McGregor was living with Schifferns and Schifferns’ common-law spouse before he was reported missing. His body was found two days later at the head of a trail.

Schifferns was arrested three days later and said the shooting was an accident while the men were intoxicated.

Schifferns’ attorney did not immediately reply to a request for comment.


Information from: The Billings Gazette,

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