Craig Titus pleads guilty to second-degree murder, kidnapping and arson; Kelly Ryan plea bargains

by Allan Donnelly

May 30, 2008


Three days before they were set to go to trial, Craig Titus and Kelly Ryan finalized a plea deal on Friday afternoon with the District Attorney in Las Vegas.

Titus and Ryan were set to go to trial after being brought up on multiple charges in the 2005 death of Melissa James, a former friend and personal assistant to the couple who was living with them in Las Vegas at the time of her death. Police found the remains of James in a Jaguar that had been set on fire in the desert. Titus and Ryan were found weeks later in Boston, Massachusetts after a nation-wide manhunt and were presumably preparing to leave the country.

On Friday afternoon, Titus agreed to plead guilty to second degree murder, kidnapping and arson. Ryan will plead guilty to first degree arson and battery with a deadly weapon. The two are scheduled to be sentenced July 18th.

Titus faces between 15 and 55 years in prison, while Ryan's defense will likely push for probation taking into account the two and a half years she has already served.


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