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Phillips Pleads Guilty to Trooper Shootings

By Associated Press

Mayville, NY – Former fugitive Ralph Phillips, whose dramatic capture at the edge of a Pennsylvania field ended the largest manhunt in New York history, pleaded guilty Wednesday to shooting three state troopers, one of whom died.

Phillips pleaded guilty to aggravated murder in the fatal shooting of Trooper Joseph Longobardo and attempted aggravated murder for shooting Trooper Donald Baker Jr. as they staked out a home in search of Phillips on Aug. 31.

Those pleas in Chautauqua County came hours after the 44-year-old career criminal pleaded guilty before a Chemung County judge to the attempted murder of Trooper Sean Brown, who survived being shot during a traffic stop near Elmira June 10.

Phillips had escaped from the Erie County Correctional Facility in Alden last April by using a can opener to cut through a kitchen roof.

After Brown was shot, state police and other law enforcement agencies launched a massive search that stretched from the Binghamton area to Chautauqua County, where Phillips grew up.

Phillips remained on the run until early September, when he surrendered after being cornered in a field in northwestern Pennsylvania.