CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — A man has pleaded guilty to murder in the 2012 slaying of a Harrison County man.

Clayton S. Collins, 29, pleaded guilty Tuesday to second-degree murder and concealing a body in the murder of Thomas Ray “T.J.” Blankenship, 20, of West Union.

Blankenship’s body was found in a shallow grave near Arden in Barbour County.

Collins faces up to 40 years in prison on the murder charge, along with an additional five years for being a repeat offender. He faces one to five years on the concealment charge.

Collins is scheduled to be sentenced September 23 in Harrison County Circuit Court.

In addition to Collins, co-defendant William B. Murray is charged for the murder as well. Murray is awaiting sentencing after being convicted of first-degree murder in July.

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