A 29-year-old Detroit man will likely spend the rest of his life in prison after confessing to eight murders -- including the murder-for-hire of a police officer's wife.
During a hearing Monday, Vincent Smothers pleaded guilty to eight counts of second-degree murder in exchange for a minimum sentence of 52-years in prison.
Smothers shocked detectives two years ago when he confessed to the murders during around-the-clock interrogations. He told investigators his hits were all related to the drug trade except for the final one, the killing of 47-year-old Rose Cobb on the day after Christmas in 2007.
That murder was allegedly arranged by officer David Cobb. Smothers said Cobb was having an affair and wanted his wife eliminated. Cobb himself was never charged in the murder -- he hanged himself in September 2008.
Smothers was arrested in April of that year. In recounting the Cobb murder, he said, "My stomach was in knots. I felt like she was innocent. All the rest were dope dealers."
He later said, "I don't have a profession. I kill people for money."
Prosecutors were happy with the deal. Without it, "we'd have to try eight cases," assistant prosecutor Robert Stevens said after the hearing. "It's an equitable resolution with a substantial amount of time."