A South Carolina man pleaded guilty to murder and kidnapping charges on Friday, after he was arrested last year for keeping a woman chained “like a dog” in a storage container; he was later linked to seven murders.
Todd Kohlhepp, 45, accepted a plea deal that sends him to prison for life without parole, Fox Carolina reported. He was facing several charges, including four murders, in 2003, the death of four people on a motorcycle shop in Chesnee, South Carolina.
Kohlhepp eligible for the death penalty, but the plea deal took that off the table.
BOND DENIED FOR SUSPECT IN 7 MURDERS, KIDNAPPINGS IN SOUTH CAROLINA
Kohlhepp was arrested in November after investigators said they discovered a woman “chained like a dog” in a metal container on his property. She was raped and held hostage for more than two months, researchers have said. The body of the woman’s boyfriend, Charles Carter, was later found in the area.
Kohlhepp later confessed to seven murders within seven months. Search teams have started to dig on the goods after Kohlkepp admitted “to investigators that he shot and killed,” the owner, service manager, mechanic and accountant at the Superbike Motorsports motorcycle shop in 2003, according to a Spartanburg County Sheriff’s investigative report. He gave details that “only the killer could know” and pointed authorities to where the bodies were buried.
He also admitted to killing a man and a woman who was doing work on his property in 2015.
THE FORMER PRIEST ACCUSED IN PAWN SHOP SLAYINGS PLEADS NOT GUILTY
Kohlhepp was released from prison in Arizona in 2001 after serving a 14-year imprisonment for the rape of a 14-year-old neighbor at gunpoint, and threatened to kill her brothers and sisters if they called the police. Kohlhepp had to register as a sex offender.
He still received his South Carolina real estate license in 2006 after lying about his felony conviction. He ended up building a successful real estate business.
Friends and colleagues at Kohlhepp, the real estate agent said that he was a hard worker with a number of peculiar habits. He would watch pornographic videos during work and made a joke on his company’s website that he motivated employees by not feeding them.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.