Man gets 20-40 years for murder

WILKES-BARRE (AP) — A man has been sentenced to 20 to 40 years in the murder of a man whose decomposing body was found in the basement of a vacant northeastern Pennsylvania home.

Sean Robert Talmadge, 33, told a Luzerne County judge on Monday that a combination of booze and synthetic marijuana prompted the violent attack.

Talmadge said he was “not a monster,” despite the beating and stabbing death of 23-year-old Ramon Torres last year.

Prosecutors said the men ran into each other in April 2017, and the defendant accused the victim of being a “rat.” They said Talmadge knocked Torres down a flight of stairs to the concrete floor of the basement and then beat and stabbed him.

The body wasn’t found until June 2017.