Crime Iowa police ambush suspect gets 2 life sentences after guilty plea

21:30  19 may  2017
21:30  19 may  2017 Source:   USA TODAY

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Man accused in Iowa police shootings asked to leave recent school football game. He pleaded guilty and received a suspended jail sentence and a year of probation. The suspect from urbandale, known to police , in custody after turning himself in.

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Des Moines police Sgt. Anthony Beminio, left, and Urbandale, Iowa, police Officer Justin Martin were killed Nov. 2, 2016. On Friday, May 19, 2017, Scott Michael Greene, the man accused of killing them, was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty.© The Des Moines Register Des Moines police Sgt. Anthony Beminio, left, and Urbandale, Iowa, police Officer Justin Martin were killed Nov. 2, 2016. On Friday, May 19, 2017, Scott Michael Greene, the man accused of killing them, was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty.

DES MOINES — An Iowa man was sentenced Friday to two consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty to last year's ambush killings of two Des Moines-area police officers.

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During a hearing at the Polk County (Iowa) Courthouse Friday morning, Scott Michael Greene, 46, withdrew not guilty pleas and pleaded guilty to two first-degree murder charges in the shooting deaths of Urbandale (Iowa) Police Officer Justin Martin, 24, and Des Moines Police Sgt. Anthony "Tony" Beminio, 38.

‘Purge’ killer given 3 life sentences

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«» Two Iowa police officers are dead following what cops are calling an " ambush -style attack.” He entered a guilty plea and was fined. He was charged with harassment. He pleaded guilty and received a suspended jail sentence and a year of probation.

He entered a guilty plea and was fined. Two days later Urbandale police were called to answer a complaint of Greene was charged with harassment. He pleaded guilty and received a suspended jail sentence and a year of probation. Two Iowa Police Officers Ambushed , Shot Dead. Nov 2 , 2016.

Greene ambushed each officer separately, gunning them down in their patrol cars in the early morning hours of Nov. 2, 2016.

In court Friday, Green admitted to both shootings.

More: Man charged in Iowa cop ambush pleads not guilty

"I took a rifle and I shot an Urbandale police officer," he said. Then, "I was driving down Merle Hay Road, I turned right next to the officer (Beminio) and I took the same rifle and I killed him."

Greene said he is under the care of the Polk County Jail's mental health unit and has been taking medication for depression.

When asked whether his medication was interfering with his ability to make decisions, he answered, "No, I'm fully aware" of what's happening.

Polk County Attorney John Sarcone said during the hearing that both Martin and Beminio "cared about the communities they served."

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Error 404: Page Not Found. Kathy Taft's Murder Suspect Enters Not Guilty Plea .

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"These two men laid down their lives for their communities and we have to recognize that," Sarcone said.

In asking for two consecutive life sentences, Sarcone said Martin and Beminio "suffered multiple, multiple injuries."

District Court Judge Karen Romano told Greene "there's no way for any of us to understand why this happened," but your actions devastated the Urbandale and Des Moines communities.

"You created the worst nightmare" for any family with a law enforcement officer, she said. Romano also ordered Greene to pay a total $300,000 in restitution for both officers' deaths.

More: Iowa police shootings 'cowardly,' chief says; suspect charged with murder

A statement from Beminio's wife and family, read by a Polk County crisis worker, said since the ambush "there have been millions of tears and I'm certain there will be millions more. ... He was a dad any child would want."

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"The children are old enough to understand their dad's life was stolen from him simply because of the uniform he wore," the family said.

"Although our family feels broken, we know the actions by this individual will not define us," the family said. "As a family, we will pick up the shattered pieces and continue to push forward as we know this is what Tony would want. Memories of his extraordinary life will lift us and carry us, and will inspire us in the time to come."

Beminio, who began his career in law enforcement in 2001 in Indianola, was an 11-year veteran of the Des Moines police department. He was a detective and school resource officer and in 2015 was promoted to sergeant.

More: Fallen Iowa officers remembered for love of job

"If God can handcraft a perfect police officer, inside and out, it would look just like Tony," Chief Dana Wingert said at his funeral last year.

Martin attended Simpson College in Indianola and graduated in 2015 with a degree in criminal justice. He was looking for jobs in the Des Moines area and thought he might have to move home when he received a call from the Urbandale Police Department, his father said shortly after his death.

"He was the one, if somebody at school was saying something, he would stop them," Randy Martin said. "That’s who he was. He was a big enough kid and nice enough that they listened to him."

Follow Grant Rodgers on Twitter: @GrantMRodgers

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