RALEIGH, N.C. — A Chapel Hill man pleaded guilty Wednesday to killing three of his neighbors more than four years ago in what prosecutors and the victims' relatives called a hate crime because they were Muslim.

Craig Stephen Hicks was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences for the Feb. 10, 2015, deaths of Deah Barakat, his wife, Yusor Abu-Salha, and her sister, Razan Abu-Salha. 

He also pleaded guilty to discharging a weapon into an occupied dwelling and was sentenced to 64 to 89 months in prison for that.

"In 36 second, Mr. Hicks executed three people," Durham County Assistant District Attorney Kendra Montgomery-Blinn said. 

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