Youth Pleads No Contest in Hostage Incident

A former San Gabriel High School student accused of holding his classmates hostage with a semiautomatic rifle pleaded no contest in Pasadena Superior Court on Monday to charges of kidnaping and assault with a deadly weapon.

Jeffrey Lyne Cox, 19, who could have faced life sentences for those felonies, entered the plea after Judge Terry Smerling told Lyne that he would not be sentenced to more than 10 years and 8 months in prison. A sentencing hearing was set for April 6 pending a psychiatric review of Cox by the state Department of Corrections.

Cox already has been found guilty of false imprisonment and burglary for storming his humanities class and holding about 60 students captive on April 26, 1988. No one was injured in the 40-minute siege. But jurors were unable to reach agreement on the kidnaping and assault charges, forcing a mistrial Dec. 19 on those counts.

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