Guilty plea in slaying of NE Pa. college student

SCRANTON, Pa. (AP) — A man has pleaded guilty to third-degree murder in the shooting death of a northeastern Pennsylvania college student a year ago.

The Times-Tribune of Scranton reports that 19-year-old Ryan Harding also pleaded guilty Monday in Lackawanna County Court to a firearms count.

In return for the pleas, prosecutors dropped charges of first-degree murder, aggravated assault and other firearms counts.

Harding and 22-year-old Marlon Clotter were charged in the May 2013 shooting death of 22-year-old Lackawanna College student Rashan Crowder.

Clotter pleaded guilty to a conspiracy count earlier this month.

Harding’s attorney, Bernard Brown, said his client was remorseful, had accepted responsibility for his actions and had apologized to the victim’s family.

Prosecutors said the plea deal guarantees a conviction and allows the family to move on.

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