Robert Field, 22, from Brackley, was due to stand trial today for the murder of Augustus ‘Gus’ Davies in June last year.
A post mortem examination found that he died as a result of multiple stab wounds to the neck.
But at Northampton Crown Court today (Monday, January 7), Fields appeared in the dock to plead guilty to the killing.
Field also pleaded guilty to possessing criminal property namely cash from the proceeds of criminal conduct.
The family and friends who gathered in court to hear the trial held back tears as the defendant changed his plea.
Field entered a not-guilty plea in October – his trial was scheduled to last six weeks.
Senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Justine Wilson, from the East Midlands Special Operations Unit Major Crime Team, said: “This was a despicable crime that has devastated a family and shaken the whole community.
“Brackley is a beautiful town and this was a totally isolated incident involving a few people who were involved in the drugs trade and subsequently showed the devastation and violence that this lifestyle brings.
“Having received the report that Gus was missing, it was clear that this was going to be an extremely complex investigation.
“I would like to recognise the dedication and professionalism shown in the team which included detectives, crime scene managers and scientists, intelligence analysts and lawyers.
“Without them and the high quality of work conducted, we would not have arrived here today.
“Particularly, it has been an immensely difficult and distressing time for Gus’s family and friends, and I would like to thank them for their courage and support throughout the investigation and criminal justice process.
“They are still coming to terms with the shocking nature of Gus’s death and I hope today’s guilty plea by Field will help bring them some comfort and closure.”
A co-defendant, Amanda Butler, 40, from Brackley, did not appear in court today.
She is charged with seven counts of possession with intent to supply drugs and possessing cash gained from criminal activity, to which she pleaded not guilty.
Field will be sentenced on a future date to be arranged.