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Warminster man gets prison in neighbor's standoff death

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By The Associated Press
Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, 12:03 p.m.

DOYLESTOWN — A man will spend 14 to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to third-degree murder in the death of his 89-year-old neighbor who was accidentally shot by police responding to a drunken standoff the suspect provoked at his suburban Philadelphia apartment complex.

The Bucks County Courier Times reports 50-year-old Andrew Cairns of Warminster pleaded guilty and was sentenced Friday before a county judge in Doylestown.

Prosecutors charged Cairns with first-degree murder for his role in the Feb. 19 shootout with police that left Marie Zienkewicz dead in the crossfire.

Investigators say Cairns traded shots with police after a dispute with his girlfriend and barricaded himself in his apartment for several hours before surrendering.

Zienkewicz, who lived in the apartment below, was struck by a police bullet and later found dead.

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