Against the advice of his lawyers, a Colorado teenager pleaded guilty Tuesday to kidnapping, murdering and dismembering 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway a year ago.
Austin Sigg, 18, admitted all 15 charges against him, including sexually assaulting Jessica and the attempted kidnapping of a jogger.
Police said Sigg provided graphic details of the Oct. 5, 2012, abduction and slaying of Jessica but denied sexually assaulting the fifth-grader. Her mother left the courtroom as the judge read details of the crime, the Denver Post noted.
The plea came three days before opening statements were to begin in Sigg's murder trial.
Because he was 17 when he committed the crimes, Sigg faces life in prison with the possibility of parole after 40 years. Sentencing is scheduled to begin Nov. 18.
Jessica vanished as she began walking to school in the Denver suburb of Westminster. Several days later, parts of her body were found in a field in Arvada, and more remains were found in a crawl space at Sigg's home.
Sigg was arrested Oct. 23 after his mother called police to report that her son had confessed.
Prosecutors said that Sigg began watching videos of children being raped and tortured about a year before the crimes. He reportedly was interested in mortuary science.
Police linked Jessica's murder to the attempted kidnapping abduction of a jogger at Ketner Lake on Memorial Day 2012. The runner told police she fought off a man who attacked her from behind and tried to subdue her using a rag soaked in a chemical.