A Black Hawk County murder trial has come to an abupt end as the jury was being selected. On what was supposed to be the second day of jury selection in the first-degree murder trial of Shawn Washington, the 27-year-old Waterloo man reached a plea agreement with prosecutors on Tuesday. Washington entered an alford plea on lesser charges, rather than risk a possible life sentence for his role in the shooting death of Thyanna Parsons late last year. An alford plea means Washington admits there is enough evidence to convict him, but he technically doesn’t admit guilt. The lesser charges include on-going criminal conduct and intimidation with a dangerous weapon. Judge George Stigler then sentenced Washington to 45 years in prison, but he’ll be eligible for parole in five years. Prosecutors said Washington was part of a group of people that opened fire outside a Waterloo home during an after-hours party last October. A stray bullet entered the house and hit Parsons, killing her. Seven people were charged in the Waterloo woman’s death. Two were convicted of murder.
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