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Leiby Kletzy went missing while walking home from a Brooklyn religious day camp in July 2011.
The man accused of kidnapping and dismembering 8-year-old Leiby Kletzy pleaded guilty Thursday in a plea deal to avoid trial.
In a largely empty proceeding in a ceremonial courtroom at the State Supreme Courthouse in Brooklyn, 36-year-old Levi Aron, admitted to the crime in July 2011, the Wall Street Journal reported.
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In a faint voice, Aron explained how he abducted Leiby while the boy was walking home from religious day camp, killed him, chopped up his body and “took it to a dumpster.”
“I put it in the suitcase,” he said of the boy’s body.
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As part of the plea deal, Aron is expected to be sentenced to life in prison on Aug. 29, New York TV station WABC reported.
Leiby's disappearance and horrific death last year stunned the tight-knit Hasidic community in a section of Brooklyn.
The loss of their son has almost been too much to bear for Leiby's parents, who did not attend Thursday's hearing but were said to be happy with criminal closure in the case, State Assemblyman Dov Hikind told WABC.
The tragedy occurred when Leiby got lost on July 11, 2011, while walking back for the first time from his summer day camp in Borough Park, after begging his parents to allow him to make the seven-block trip alone.
He stopped to ask directions from Aron who confessed to abducting him and holding the boy for a day before killing him and cutting up his body.
Detectives found pieces of Leiby's body in a refrigerator freezer in Aron’s apartment.