Joplin man pleads guilty in nephew's drinking death -

Joplin man pleads guilty in nephew's drinking death

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By KMOV Web Producer By KMOV Web Producer

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) -- A Joplin man who was accused of challenging his 11-year-old nephew to a drinking game has pleaded guilty in the boy's alcohol-poisoning death.

Twenty-nine-year-old Dale Phillips had been scheduled for trial next month on charges of second-degree murder and endangering the welfare of a child. KOAM-TV reports ( ) that Phillips pleaded guilty to those charges Monday.

Phillips' nephew, Tyler Fecko, was found dead in July 2009 at his uncle's apartment, where the boy had been staying. Authorities said the boy died after taking part in a drinking game with Phillips and his girlfriend.

The girlfriend, Linda Petrait, was sentenced last month to 13 years in prison. She had pleaded guilty last year to second-degree murder and child endangerment.

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