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Soldotna man pleads guilty to manslaughter

Posted: January 12, 2012 - 5:57pm  |  Updated: January 13, 2012 - 9:10am
Lyle Ludvick is pictured at his arraignment in 2010.  Photo by M. Scott Moon
Photo by M. Scott Moon
Lyle Ludvick is pictured at his arraignment in 2010.

A 44-year-old Soldotna man pleaded guilty to a single charge of manslaughter Thursday afternoon at the Kenai Courthouse.

On July 16, 2010, Lyle Ludvick shot 23-year-old Brendan McGee in the head with a shotgun at close range over a $500 payment for a gun, according to court records.

Judge Charles Huguelet accepted the defendant’s plea, clarifying that Ludvick was giving up his right to a jury trial.

Ludvick’s original charges included two counts of second-degree murder, first-degree burglary, third-degree assault and tampering with physical evidence.

Appearing in a worn yellow jumpsuit, Ludvick said little else than “guilty.”

If the court accepts the plea agreement at sentencing, the aforementioned charges will be dropped, said Scot Leaders, Kenai district attorney.

Defense attorney Michael Moberly said there is an agreement between the defendant and the state of a maximum sentence of 11 years in prison with seven served. 

The offer also indicates 10 years probation, but it’s possible the length will be reduced to seven years, Moberly said.

McGee’s family and friends were present during Thursday’s hearing. His brother Kevin, 21, said the state’s handling of the case angered him.

The two initial murder charges alleged Ludvick exhibited extreme indifference to the value of a human life. A manslaughter charge indicates that his conduct was simply reckless in causing the death.

Kevin said Ludvick intended to kill his brother.

“It was premeditated,” he said. “He went there with a shotgun, and he knew what he was doing. I don’t see how someone can shoot somebody in the face and only get seven years.”

According to court records, a witness, identified as Thomas Mason, told Alaska State Troopers a man he did not know came to a one-room cabin at 47895 Andrews Ave., in Soldotna on July 16, 2010 at about 2 p.m. and asked to speak with McGee.

Mason said he was going outside to “draw” when the man appeared at the cabin’s door carrying a shotgun. The man, whom Mason later identified as Ludvick, asked to speak with McGee, who was asleep at the time. Mason told troopers he backed out of the way and Ludvick entered.

The two then stood within a foot of each other and argued over the $500 payment for a gun. McGee then started to get up and the man discharged the shotgun.

Buckshot hit McGee in the lower face and neck, according to court records. Troopers said investigators retrieved pellets from the wall directly behind the body consistent with the direction of the shot.

Ludvick has remained at Wildwood Correctional Center since his arrest in late July 2010.

Sentencing is scheduled for April 16 at the Kenai Courthouse.

— Editor's note: A previous version of this story contained an error, which has been corrected.

Jerzy Shedlock can be reached at jerzy.shedlock@peninsulaclarion.com.

 

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TheKenaiKid
126
Points
TheKenaiKid 01/12/12 - 10:03 pm
0
2
Uh...

Fix this story. The fifth to last paragraph is nonsensical. Come on, this is a big story! Feel free to pull this comment once changes are made...

Raoulduke
3055
Points
Raoulduke 01/13/12 - 04:08 am
0
2
What?

An Alaskan can get away with murder.Just PLEA BARGAIN.This is all the justice system seems to do with felony cases.Which either indicates lack of funds for lengthy trials,long backlog,or just plain indifference to the victim's.I can not say which one for sure.I have noticed when following many court cases in this state.The prosecutors end up giving the defendant more of a break.Than the victim receives.This has been my observation.Which is at best DISHEARTENING.

Norseman
3616
Points
Norseman 01/13/12 - 07:26 am
0
2
justice

..."If the court accepts the plea agreement at sentencing, the aforementioned charges will be dropped, said Scot Leaders, Kenai district attorney......"

Tis a very sad day indeed when we realize there is NO justice in our courts.

We have lousy prosecuting attorneys. This man committed premeditated murder and gets a manslaughter charge with 7 years? He will be elgible for parole probation in half that time.

This is an outrage. This is the worst case of plea bargaining yet. Who hires and fires the DA's? We need to get some DA's who are going to serve this community instead of plea bargaining or dismissing every case.

This is wrong, plain wrong.

bigtalkahh
184
Points
bigtalkahh 01/13/12 - 07:58 am
0
2
Prison Space

Not excusing DUIs.... I have a friend who has been in Wildwood for more than two years on driving offenses where nobody was ever hurt. We have no idea how much longer they plan on keeping him. His PO seems to be a bit over-the-top with a huge ego problem (someone should look at that). In contrast, I simply can not understand how the courts can ruin a person's life for something fairly trivial (in my view), and give a similar sentence to someone who intentionally shot someone in the face over a few dollars. Blind justice, indeed!

northernlights
218
Points
northernlights 01/13/12 - 09:24 am
0
2
child molester

Well if this isnt bad enough, our wonderful judge allowed a child molester, good ole Joe to go free and roam the streets. I was so outraged and still am. What is going on with our court system? Lack of mental sanity. This was a planned murder, I dont get it, why on earth is he not serving life?

akmscott
131
Points
akmscott 01/13/12 - 03:37 pm
0
2
This man is truly dangerous

This man is truly dangerous and needs to be kept away from the public!Another prime example of a out of control court system the needs to be redone!Meanwhile-some kid in the lower 48 is doing a mandatory 10 years for having more than an ounce of pot on him when pulled over for a broken tail light.This country needs a real big reality check!

spwright
1376
Points
spwright 01/13/12 - 06:15 pm
0
2
No More Room at the Inn 1/13/12

Friday the 13th !
I'm just guessing here. The Alaska State Prison system has had a OVER POPULATION Problem for well over 20 years.
Prisoners are sent to Arizona at Huge Costs

Therefore the Judges are dismissing cases cuz There is No Place to Put Them.

Then Our All Wise & Wonderful Alaskan Leadership builds a Brand New Prison in "The Valley" BUT they forgot to provide
water & sewer systems for the New Prison.
Therefore that Brand New Prison just sits there collecting Dust while We have Overflowing Prison & No Place to house
the convicted Prisoners ? W T ? Over ?

SPW "Airborne"

Citizen17
21
Points
Citizen17 01/14/12 - 05:22 am
0
2
Plea Bargain??

Am I reading this right?? He gets to plea bargain for premeditated murder??? Are all of you in the court system insane????? I knew that our court system has become a corrupt institution, but THIS is over the edge. How will justice be served, or is that a thing of the past?

mcheintz
2
Points
mcheintz 01/14/12 - 08:55 am
0
2
wth

this was MURDER...PREmeditated period..in another state it could be a death sentence, here it is 7 years..it does not matter the circumstances behind this..bottom line was someone was murdered. No justice is right.

BrandyCissell-Aburto
0
Points
BrandyCissell-Aburto 01/14/12 - 11:21 am
0
2
shamefull

This is a HORRIBLE injustice. Kevin is correct. This man came to the residence armed, and with intent. He took a young mans life.........and our judicial system says that 11 years with 7 served is fair? WTF? This man will have his life back in less than 4 years........while the family and friends of this young victim will still be picking up pieces of theirs. This [filtered word]'n judge needs a reality check.............what if it was his son. Maybe the sentence might have reflected some REAL justice.

crazy_native97
0
Points
crazy_native97 01/17/12 - 11:57 am
0
2
WTF!!

The judge needs to get his head screwed on straight. This man should go to jail for alot more longer that that. No one knows if he'll do it again.

KmcGee
0
Points
KmcGee 01/19/12 - 04:40 pm
0
2
Justice?

My names Kevin McGee. My brother was shot in the face with a 12 guage shotgun at close range, by a man who is obviously unstable. I was incarcerated for two years from August 2010 to january 2012 for some petty theft charges. I dont understand how or why the outcome of this plea agreement. But i do know this is not justice. I was locked up when all of this happend, and it's been very hard for me to deal with this. I just dont undertsand how you can murder someone, and only serve 7 years. I've seen many people come and go from our prison system, and majority of them served more time than this for less severe crimes. I just ask you all as a community to keep me and my family in your prayers as we struggle through this hard time. You can email me at Mcgeezy_Saved@hotmail.com if you have any questions.

KmcGee
0
Points
KmcGee 01/19/12 - 04:41 pm
0
2
Justice?

Thank you.

c.udvick
6
Points
c.udvick 11/06/12 - 11:29 pm
0
2
lyle ludvick

he that is without sin cast the first stone. this man is my father who want no more than to take back what horrible action has taken place. he is a good father and man no one knows him better than I. please know he is not a bad man and some how find it in yourself to forgive him.

c.udvick
6
Points
c.udvick 11/06/12 - 11:31 pm
0
2
lyle ludvick

two familys are hurt from this not just one.

lkpomn912
931
Points
lkpomn912 11/07/12 - 01:30 am
0
2
You voted in these

You voted in these politicians and judges, and then you act shocked and surprised at the obscenity of their actions. You allow these laws to be passed. because you don't and you won't pay any attention to your government, and you get the one that you created, the government that you deserve.
This is your America.
If you want it stopped decide how can return America to the laws of your fathers and grandfathers, then make it happen.

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