Utah man pleads guilty to ex-girlfriend's murder

January 6, 2012 - 7:45 PM

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A Utah man was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison after pleading guilty to murdering his ex-girlfriend and hauling her dead body to Missouri inside a 50-gallon storage bin.

Michael Doyel entered the plea Friday and was immediately sentenced by Judge Judith Atherton in Salt Lake City's 3rd District Court.

In a parallel case, the 51-year-old Doyel pleaded guilty in December to a federal kidnapping charge. He was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison, and will serve that term before the Utah sentence.

In federal court, Doyel said he strangled Deborah Jones in April 2008 after she ended their relationship.

Jones' body was found inside a bin in the backseat of her car outside a Branson, Mo., motel.