A murder case will pit brother versus sister in a Douglas County courtroom.
Omaha resident Gary D. Lee struck a plea bargain Tuesday with prosecutors in which he admitted to helping his sister, Monique Lee, kill her landlord, Karen Jenkins of Omaha.
Gary Lee promised to testify against his sister and, in the process, admit that he lured Jenkins to an apartment on the pretense that he was interested in renting it.
Monique Lee then jumped Karen Jenkins, hitting her in the head and strangling her with a vacuum cleaner cord.
Jenkins fought back, trying to kick her way free, Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine said, so Monique Lee told her brother to hold Jenkins' feet.
After Monique Lee strangled her, the two stuffed tissue down her throat and put Super Glue in her nose — perhaps to ensure she had stopped breathing, Kleine said. They then hid her body.
The plea deal came almost a year after Jenkins, an accomplished woman and Monique Lee's landlord, was killed. Jenkins' body was found Oct. 23, 2010, in an abandoned house across the street from where she had been killed six days earlier.
Gary Lee pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and weapon use in Jenkins' death. Prosecutors reduced his charge from first-degree murder in return for his promise to testify against his sister. He faces 21 years to life in prison when he's sentenced.
Jenkins had allowed Monique Lee to work off her rent several times. However, she had begun eviction proceedings in October 2010. Lee had owed Jenkins $600 in rent.
Monique Lee, 28, is awaiting trial on first-degree murder charges. She has pleaded not guilty.
Karen Jenkins, the youngest of six children, was a 48-year-old college instructor and north Omaha businesswoman.
She graduated from Holy Name High School and received a bachelor's degree from Creighton University and a master's degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. In 2007, she earned a doctorate in conflict analysis and resolution.
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