PORT CLINTON, Ohio – A northern Ohio man accused of killing his father, stepmother and stepbrother pleaded guilty Friday to three counts of aggravated murder.
William Liske, 24, could have faced the death penalty if he had been convicted in the killings at the family's rural home just outside Toledo last October. He now faces life in prison without parole at his sentencing Sept. 9.
Other charges against Liske in the case were dropped in the plea agreement with prosecutors.
Prosecutors and defense attorneys are under the judge's order not to comment on the case outside court.
A judge ruled earlier this year that Liske was competent to stand trial despite a history of mental illness. Liske has a long history of arrests and criminal convictions and was involved in domestic incidents at the house.
Liske has a long history of arrests and criminal convictions and was involved in domestic incidents at the house.
Court documents showed that Liske's father had tried to help his son and the younger Liske would sometimes stop taking medication for mental illness.
Liske's stepbrother, Devon Griffin, found the bodies of his brother Derek Griffin, 23; mother Susan Liske, and her husband, William Liske.
Devon Griffin came home after spending the night out and told authorities it first looked like a joke from a Halloween party. But he soon realized the bodies weren't decorations and ran outside, calling an aunt who dialed 911.
"My nephew came home and there's blood everywhere," Griffin's aunt told a dispatcher on the 911 call.
The Liskes and Derek Griffin suffered severe trauma to the head, authorities said.
William Liske was arrested at the family's cabin near Scio, some 170 miles away from the house.
The younger Liske lived in a halfway house in nearby Sandusky, authorities said. He sometimes visited his father and stepfamily on the weekends at their home off a country road in sparsely populated farmland.
Liske's father told deputies a year ago that his son punched him twice.