RALEIGH, N.C. - A man who killed his wife after she was trying to help him when he got out of prison will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Multiple media outlets reported that 39-year-old Lanson Stalf plead guilty to first-degree murder Friday in a deal that kept him from possibility getting the death penalty.

Authorities say Stalf broke into his wife's home with a rock, then hit 34-year-old Stephanie Autry in the head with a hammer as she returned home on Oct. 27.

Prosecutors say Stalf wanted his wife's debit card and later strangled her with a piece of wire while demanding her PIN number.

Stalf had been released from prison less than two weeks earlier on a larceny charge. 

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