A northern Minnesotan has admitted strangling a Twin Cities man because he feared his victim was coming between him and his mother.

Shawn R. Doherty, 26, of Babbitt, pleaded guilty Wednesday to intentional second-degree murder in the death on Jan 13, 2014, of Paul Bulen, 55, of Mahtomedi.

The plea agreement in St. Louis County District Court in Virginia calls for Doherty to receive a 27-year prison sentence.

Bulen was found unconscious outside the mother’s Babbitt home dressed only in underwear and a T-shirt.

The defendant’s mother, 52-year-old Lynda Doherty, was running errands at the time of the attack. Before she left, Bulen asked her to lock the bedroom door because he was afraid of her son, according to the criminal complaint.

Lynda Doherty also told officers that the night before Bulen died her son had repeatedly entered her bedroom and woke her up, and at one point told her he thought Bulen was coming between them and that he planned to kill him, the complaint added.

Officers found the bedroom door forced open. In the bathroom they found Shawn Doherty in a fetal position in the bath tub, the complaint read.