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News Scan

Judge to Allow Death Penalty Option in Retrial: A Pennsylvania judge has ruled in favor of allowing prosecutors to seek the death penalty for a man convicted of murdering a woman ten years ago.  The Altoona Mirror reports that jurors in the first trial for 41-year-old Paul Ross deadlocked on whether or not he should be sentenced to death or life behind bars.  Ross' defense attorneys argued that the original jurors essentially decided against sentencing their client to death, therefore it should be barred as a sentencing option in his retrial.     
Illegal Immigrants Suspected of Killing Border Patrol Agent: Two illegal immigrants from Mexico have been arrested for the Sunday evening murder of an off-duty U.S. Border Patrol agent.  Fernando Del Valle of the Brownsville Herald reports that the two suspects had been arrested and deported several times in the past and confessed to committing several robberies in the local area.  Both men are facing charges of capital murder, attempted capital murder and aggravated robbery.

Prosecutors Can Seek Death Penalty for Mass Killer: A California judge has ruled that, in spite of prosecutorial misconduct, he would allow the district attorney to seek a death sentence for a man convicted of murdering eight people at a Southern California beauty salon in 2011. Paloma Esquivel of the Los Angeles Times reports that earlier this year, Scott Dekraai pled guilty to eight counts of murder and one count of attempted murder, but wanted the death penalty off the table based on claims of prosecutorial misconduct.  The judge ultimately ruled to allow the death penalty,  citing the prosecutor's mistakes as negligent rather than malicious.

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