Accused Serial Killer Convicted

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A jury took just 80 minutes to find a serial killings suspect guilty of first-degree murder in the death of a 22-year-old Jackson, Miss. native.

Jurors will begin deliberations Wednesday morning on whether Derrick Todd Lee, already sentenced to life in prison for another killing, should be executed for the slaying of Charlotte Murray Pace of Baton Rouge in May 2002.

Lee sat stone-faced after the verdict was read, while the victim's mother, Ann Pace, began to shake and cry.

Prosecutors took eight days to present their case. The presented crime scene photos and evidence from Pace's murder and four other killings authorities have attributed to Lee.

DNA evidence was used to connect Lee to the Pace murder, and a nurse testified that Lee tried to brutally rape and kill her in July 2002.

Lee's lawyers declined to call a witness, saying the prosecution had failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. The defense also questioned the memory of Diane Alexander, the nurse who claimed she was attacked, and said the DNA evidence was unreliable.

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