"Manhole Murderer" receives maximum sentence

A man convicted of the "manhole murders" will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Friday morning, 51-year-old Randy Reeder was sentenced to 260 years behind bars.

Last month, he was found guilty of killing of four homeless men and hiding their bodies in South Bend manholes.

In court Reeder gave a brief statement before hearing his sentence.

He maintained his innocence, showed no remorse and asked the judge for the death penalty instead of a life sentence. He said he did not want to spend the rest of his life in prison.

The judge chose to give him the maximum sentence resulting in 65 years for each count of murder, totaling 260 years behind bars.

The decision was made based on the trial evidence showing the murders were brutal, heinous, intentional and aggravated.

“The manner in which these crimes were committed its not as if you walked up to them and put a bullet into a person's head ... these men suffered while Mr. Lawson maybe never gained consciousness ... each man was struck no less than seven times, with either a hammer or a pipe ... they suffered," says Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Ken Cotter.

Reeder is expected to appeal the sentence.

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