FORT MEYERS, Fla. (FOX 9) - Lois Riess, the Minnesota woman accused of killing a woman in Fort Myers Beach in April 2018, has entered a guilty plea to avoid the death penalty and been sentenced to life in prison, according to the Office of the State Attorney in Florida.
Riess had been charged with first degree murder for the killing of 59-year-old Pamela Hutchinson. Police say Riess befriended Hutchinson in order to kill her and steal her idenity.
In a release, the State Attorney’s Office says they withdrew the possibility of the death penalty in exchange for the plea. The victim’s family was supportive of the deal.
“The defendant will never get out of prison. This life sentence also alleviates any appellate issues that could arise and guarantees she will never be free again. It also allows for the family of the victim to not have to go through the details of this crime at trial,” State Attorney Amira Fox said in a release.
Riess was charged in the murder of Hutchinson before fleeing to Texas where she was eventually arrested.
She is also suspected of killing her husband and stealing over $11,000 from him in their hometown of Blooming Prairie, Minnesota in March of 2018.