Russell Britton, suspect in Nathaniel Tallman homicide, pleads guilty

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BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. — One of the three suspects in the death of 25-year-old Nathaniel Tallman of Lafayette accepted a plea bargain Monday, pleading guilty to two felony charges.

Russell Britton, 58, pleaded guilty to one count accessory to murder and one county robbery, Boulder County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Catherine Olguin said.

He was sentenced to 15 years in prison at Monday’s hearing.

Originally, the defendant faced first-degree murder and possession of marijuana charges as well as the robbery and accessory charges as well as the robbery and accessory charges. The plea bargain dropped the murder and drug charges.

Tallman was shot and killed in January after he planned to meet the suspects at his home in Berthound for a marijuana deal, police said.

His body was found March 13 near Lusk, Wyoming along U.S. 85.

According to the Daily Camera, a new testimony by Britton said that Tallman was killed at his Berthound property. Britton said he had planned to meet Tallman at his home for a marijuana transaction on Jan. 21. The 56-year-old reported hearing an approaching vehicle while he was at the Berthound residence and saw Tallman’s 2014 Mitsubishi Lancer pulling up.

Britton said Moises Mendez, 26, got out of the car as Daniel Ortiz, 38, pulled up in another vehicle — Ortiz and Mendez are also suspects in the homicide investigation.

Ortiz and Mendez had what appeared to be a body wrapped in a tarp, Britton told investigators. They asked Britton to dispose of it.

Britton said he got rid of the body while driving to North Dakota.

Ortiz’s attorney, Matt Connell, told the Daily Camera that Britton keeps changing his story and his new testimony only further indicates his guilt.

“Our position is that (prosecutors) gave the wrong deal to the wrong guy,” Connell said.

The court delayed the preliminary hearings for Ortiz and Mendez to Aug. 4 at 9 a.m. due to the plea deal and new evidence presented in the case.

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