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News Scan

Teen Sentenced to 50 Years for Killing Neighbor:  John de Leon of The Seattle Times reports that Daniel J. Mustard, 19, was sentenced to 50 years in prison for killing his 87-year-old neighbor Ruby Andrews.  Mustard, 17 at the time, was invited into Andrew's home in 2009 after he told her he was conducting a survey for school.  Prosecutors allege he stabbed Andrews 16 times, took pictures of her body, and stole her white Cadillac.  He later bragged to others about the killing. Prosecutors were able to seek a longer sentence because the jury determined Andrews was a "particularly vulnerable" victim.

Ohio Supreme Court Sets Seven Execution Dates: 
Andrew Welsh-Huggins of the Associated Press reports the Ohio Supreme Court today set the dates for seven executions, scheduling one for per month through October.  The court spaced the dates a month apart in response a request from Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction director Gary Mohr, who stated 30 days would be helpful to the department.  If the scheduled executions are carried out, 2011 would set a state record for executions in a single year with a total of nine.

Ohio Murderer's Confession Released:  Holly Zachariah and Allison Manning of The Columbus Dispatch have this story on the four-page confession released yesterday of Matthew Hoffman, drafted as part of Hoffman's agreement with prosecutors to take the death penalty off the table.  Hoffman admits to fatally stabbing Tina Herrmann and her friend Stephanie Sprang with a hunting knife, later killing Herrmann's son when he returned home from school.  After dumping the bodies in a hollowed out tree, Hoffman took Herrmann's 13-year-old daughter, still alive, to his basement and raped her several times over a four-day period.  Hoffman states in his confession that he did not intend to hurt the girl, claiming he cooked hamburgers, slept with his arm around her, and let her play video games. 

Clemency is Denied for Missouri Death Row Inmate:  The Associated Press reports Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has denied clemency to Martin Link, 47.  Link is scheduled to die tomorrow for the kidnap, rape and murder of 11-year-old girl Elissa Self in 1991.  Link has appeals pending before a federal judge and the Missouri Supreme Court challenging the legality of Missouri's lethal injection process.        

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