A man accused of imprisoning a 10-year-old girl in a backyard dungeon for 16 days pleaded guilty to kidnapping and admitted he built the bunker specifically for the youngster a year before he abducted her.
Under the plea bargain, John Esposito is expected to get 15 years to life in prison July 26 for Katie Beers' 1992 kidnapping. The 45-year-old building contractor entered the plea Thursday.Prosecutors said that he forced Katie into a box in the bunker after she resisted his sexual advances. She survived on bologna sandwiches, sodas and junk food and watched a television placed in the cell with her.
District Attorney James Catterson said he accepted the plea bargain to spare Katie, now 12, from having to testify at a trial. Esposito could have received 25 years to life on the original charges.
In court, Esposito admitted that he had schemed for a year to abduct the girl, whom he had known since she was born.