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The Journal Gazette

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Friday, November 03, 2017 1:00 am

Inmate, 23, pleads guilty to '15 slaying

Says he needed to make peace, sleep

JIM CHAPMAN | The Journal Gazette

Xavier Miller was in prison for robbing a south-side clothing store when he decided he had to tell police something: He lured a man into a vacant house and shot him in the head.

Miller, 23, pleaded guilty Thursday in Allen Superior Court to murder in the Sept. 26, 2015, slaying of Porter Billians, 19.

If a judge accepts a plea agreement in January, Miller will be sentenced to 50 years in prison. That sentence will be tacked onto the 12-year sentence he is serving for the robbery he committed two days before the killing.

In March, police met with Miller at his request at Miami Correctional Facility near Bunker Hill in north-central Indiana.

Miller told police he killed Billians after luring him to an abandoned house in the 6200 block of Kent Road, near East Paulding Road and Calhoun and Lafayette streets. Miller told Billians he wanted to use his cellphone but pulled a .40-caliber handgun and shot Billians in the head. He then took his money and cellphone, he told police.

Miller and another man planned to rob Billians because they needed money, but Miller told police his companion had no idea he planned to kill Billians. Miller told police he confessed because he couldn't sleep, needed to make peace and move on.

Officers were called about 2:15 a.m. Sept. 26 to the single-story home in the Hillcrest neighborhood. They found an open door and Billians dead inside.

Two days earlier, on Sept. 24, 2015, Miller and two other men robbed AJ's Locker Room at 121 E. Pettit Ave. in Southgate Plaza. 

As the men piled up about $1,200 in clothing at the counter while a clerk folded it, Miller pulled a handgun and ordered the clerk to open the cash register. The men were caught on store video, and two teachers at Bishop Luers High School saw the fleeing men run by their classroom windows, dropping clothes along the way.

Miller was later arrested during a traffic stop. He was sentenced in March 2016 to 12 years for the robbery.

Prosecutors formally charged him with Billians' murder in June.