ELKO, Nev. – A Nevada man sentenced to die for a 1998 murder has been issued a new sentence that gives him credit for 16 years of time served and makes him eligible for parole immediately.
Elko County District Judge Norman Robison on Thursday resentenced 55-year-old Kelly Rhyne to life in prison with the possibility of parole after the Carlin man pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in a deal with prosecutors.
The state Supreme Court twice upheld Rhyne's first-degree conviction in the beating death of Donald "Lobo" Brown in an Elko alley.
But Robison overturned it in 2010, ruling Rhyne was mentally incompetent at his first trial and his lawyers were unqualified to handle a death penalty case.
The Elko Daily Free Press reports (http://tinyurl.com/kk29m8l ) prosecutors agreed to a plea bargain rather than retrying the case.
Information from: Elko Daily Free Press, http://www.elkodaily.com