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NAU shooting suspect Steven Jones pleads guilty
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NAU shooting suspect Steven Jones pleads guilty

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The Jury Can't Agree

In this file photo from May 2017, Steven Jones listens as the jury foreman in his first-degree murder trial announces that the jury cannot come to agreement on a verdict. Jones Thursday accepted a plea deal.

Updated at 3:45 p.m.: Steven Jones entered a guilty plea at the Coconino County Superior Court on Thursday afternoon to one count of manslaughter and three counts of aggravated assault.

Jones' new trial had been scheduled to begin later this month, years after a jury deadlocked on first-degree murder and aggravated assault charges. His new plea in a deal with prosecutors, which Judge Dan Slayton approved, makes that moot.

Under an agreement with prosecutors Thursday, Jones pleaded guilty to manslaughter and three counts of aggravated assault. The deal calls for a prison sentence of up to 10 years, but the final say is up to the judge. Sentencing will be held Feb. 11.

Jones had faced up to 25 years if convicted of second-degree murder in a new trial. He also was charged with six counts of aggravated assault.

For more information, see Friday's Arizona Daily Sun.

Original post at 11:30 a.m.: Steven Jones, the man accused in the NAU shooting case, has reportedly accepted a plea deal as of Thursday, sources say.

Rich Robertson, a private investigator working with Jones' attorneys, confirmed that his client will plea guilty at the Coconino County Superior Court on Thursday. Robertson wouldn't explain details of the deal struck between Jones' attorneys and prosecutors, as of early Thursday. But he said it would be explained at the hearing.

A hearing to review and formalize the plea is expected to happen later Thursday afternoon. Jones shot four university students after an off-campus fight moved onto NAU's campus, leading to the death of Colin Brough on Oct. 9, 2015. Prosecutors recently dropped the first-degree murder charge, favoring a second degree murder charge and the six counts of aggravated assault.

Jury summons for Jones's retrial were expected to be sent out next week.

Scott Buffon can be reached at sbuffon@azdailysun.com, on Twitter @scottbuffon or by phone at (928) 556-2250.

Felicia Fonseca with the Associated Press contributed to this article.

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