Colbert County man pleads guilty in conspiracy to kill teen

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TUSCUMBIA, Ala. – He stood accused of setting up a meeting which ended in the murder of a Tuscumbia teen, this week he pleaded guilty.

Set to go to trial in less than two weeks – attorneys for 21-year-old Devontae Bates helped orchestrate a plea agreement which could lead to a 20-year prison sentence. Bates was set for trial in Colbert County Circuit Court on October 16th.

After discussing the plea agreement with the family of the victim, Kijana Freeman, prosecutors moved forward with the agreement.

According to Tuscumbia police, Bates contacted Freeman to purchase an X-Box Kijana had for sale. Investigators say Bates lured Freeman to Spring Creek Apartments on the night of March 1, 2016. After he arrived, investigators say a truck with three men pulled up behind Freeman and opened fire. Freeman died from numerous gun shot wounds, another teen in the car was injured.

Thomas Hubbard, Peter Capote, and Benjamin Young are accused of being behind the shooting. Investigators say Hubbard is the mastermind behind the plot to shoot Freeman. Hubbard was under the impression Freeman burglarized his home, stealing an X-Box. All three are charged with capital murder.

With the three men set for trial, Bates could likely be used as a state witness during testimony. He is scheduled to be sentenced in March of next year.