Man pleads guilty in killing of 7-year-old Cumberland girl, her uncle

Man faces 110-year sentence

CUMBERLAND, Ind. - A man pleaded guilty Friday to two counts of murder in connection with the 2011 killings of a 7-year-old girl and her uncle.

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said Jeremy Priel agreed to a plea deal that calls for a 110-year sentence in the killings of Kyleigh Crane and Jeremy Crane, 21.

Priel's sentencing is set for July 26.

Michael Bell pleaded guilty in April to two counts of murder, agreeing to a 100-year sentence. Bell's sentencing is set for Aug. 9.

The victims were fatally shot at a home in the 600 block of Woodlark Drive in December 2011.

Bell and Priel became suspects after they gave conflicting information to police, investigators said. The men went to the home to steal video game equipment.

"Bell stated that Priel told everyone to get down on the ground and that while Jeremy Crane was lying down, Jeremy Priel walked over him and shot him," read part of the probable cause affidavit.

Bell told police that Priel shot Jeremy Crane again when he heard him make a gasping sound.

Bell said he didn't see Kyleigh Crane get shot because he ran out of the house before he heard the shot, although police noted that no one else in the area reported hearing a shot, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Police said they found the gun used in the slayings under the bed of a woman Bell had been staying with.

Days later, two men came to Cumberland police to say that they had bought an Xbox 360 and
PlayStation 3 from Jeremy Priel, paying $40 and an ounce of marijuana, according to the probable cause affidavit.

"The PlayStation 3 appeared to have had blood on it when they bought it, so as the news coverage of the homicide on Woodlark began to release information about their being an Xbox and PlayStation 3 taken, the men became suspicious and decided to contact police," according to the probable cause affidavit.

"It's certainly a senseless crime. There's no question about that. To kill two individuals, especially a 7-year-old girl, for two game stations is absolutely ridiculous. To shoot Kyleigh was completely unnecessary. Not that Jeremy was justified either. But not a typical homicide we see," said Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson.

Follow Derrik Thomas on Twitter: @derrikthomas


 

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