Man pleads guilty in Houston-area officer murder

May 12, 2011 - 2:58 PM

HOUSTON (AP) — A 26-year-old man accused of fatally shooting a Houston-area police officer has reached a plea deal with prosecutors that will send him to prison for 40 years.

The Harris County District Attorney's office says Sergio Robles pleaded guilty Thursday to the lesser charge of murder in the 2009 death of Pasadena police officer Jesse Hamilton.

Hamilton was responding to a domestic disturbance call when Robles shot him in the head.

Authorities say Robles has a history of mental illness that includes schizophrenia.

DA spokeswoman Donna Hawkins says there were conflicting expert reports about whether he was insane at the time of the shooting.

Prosecutors say the decision to offer Robles the plea bargain was difficult.

He was initially charged with capital murder and faced up to life in prison.