Man Agrees to Plea Bargain in Double Slaying

Man Agrees to Plea Bargain in Double Slaying

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WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah (AP) -- A West Valley City man accused of killing his wife and daughter in what he purportedly felt was a test by God has agreed to a plea bargain, a prosecutor said.

The agreement would forestall a possible death penalty for Brian Christopher Sullivan, 40, who is charged with two counts of capital homicide.

The plea is to be entered at a hearing on July 1 before 3rd District Judge J. Dennis Frederick.

Deputy Salt Lake County District Attorney Paul Parker said Wednesday that Sullivan had accepted a plea offer, but he declined to give details of the agreement.

Sullivan is accused in the Presidents Day 2003 stabbing deaths of 33-year-old LaRae Marara Sullivan and their 4-year-old daughter, Kehaulani.

Sullivan told a West Valley City police officer, "the Lord had not stopped him" from stabbing his wife at least eight times in the chest, according to testimony at a January 2005 preliminary hearing.

The girl was stabbed at least 23 times in the chest. Both victims had defensive wounds on their hands.

Sullivan washed the bodies and laid them side-by-side on a bed, draping the mother's arm around the girl and placing a stuffed animal beside the child. Four days later he allegedly confessed the slayings to his older sister, who called police.

Sullivan has a long history of strange behavior, said his sister, who testified at the hearing. She said he discerned signs from God in everyday events, went to Israel in search of the Ark of the Covenant and felt he was special in God's eyes because he had survived a bullet wound and had a cat with a broken tail.

She said he also displayed paranoid behavior, as when he dismantled a Christmas ornament and doorknobs to look for listening devices.

Sullivan was deemed mentally competent, by default, after refusing to cooperate with mental health evaluators.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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