California synagogue shooting suspect pleads guilty
The big picture: Under the conditional plea, Earnest agreed to serve a life sentence in prison without the eligibility for parole. His sentencing is slated to take place on Sept. 30.
- The district attorney's office said it consulted with victims and their families before agreeing to the plea agreement, per AP.
- Earnest faces additional charges in federal court. Federal prosecutors must decide by Aug. 30 on whether to pursue the death penalty, according to AP.
Background: Earnest entered Chabad of Poway during the last day of the Passover celebrations in 2019 with a semi-automatic rifle. He then opened fire, killing 60-year-old Lori Gilbert-Kaye and injuring three others, including an 8-year-old girl and a rabbi.
- An affidavit indicated that Earnest later called 911 after driving away from the synagogue and said: “I just shot up a synagogue,” explaining to the police dispatcher that he did it “because Jewish people are destroying the white race.”
- In May 2019, Earnest pleaded not guilty to state murder charges and separately to state and federal arson charges at an Escondido, California, mosque.