- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 9, 2004


Convicted sniper John Allen Muhammad, already on death row for his role in an October 2002 killing spree that left 10 persons dead, will face a second death-penalty prosecution beginning June 22.

Muhammad will be arraigned on that date in Fairfax County Circuit Court on capital-murder charges stemming from the slaying of FBI analyst Linda Franklin outside a Home Depot on Oct. 14, 2002.

Muhammad already was convicted in another Virginia county for the Oct. 9, 2002, murder of Dean Harold Meyers near Manassas. The jury in that case sentenced Muhammad to death, but defense lawyers are appealing the conviction.

Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Robert F. Horan Jr. has said he wants to put Muhammad on trial again as an insurance policy in case Muhammad’s original conviction is overturned.

Muhammad’s attorneys have said a second trial is mere “bloodlust” and have said they plan to seek a delay in the second trial until the appeals are resolved in the initial case.

Muhammad’s accomplice in the sniper killings, 19-year-old Lee Boyd Malvo, was also convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Prince William Commonwealth’s Attorney Paul Ebert, who obtained the death penalty against Muhammad and would most likely be next in line to prosecute Malvo, has said he wants to wait for the outcome of a U.S. Supreme Court case on the execution of juveniles before deciding whether to proceed.

Malvo was 17 at the time of the 2002 sniper spree, which left 10 persons dead and three others seriously wounded in Maryland, Virginia and the District, over a three-week span.

Muhammad is being held in Virginia’s Sussex I prison in Waverly, but will be transferred to appear in person at his arraignment.

“We expect him in the next couple of weeks,” said Tony Shobe, spokesman for the Fairfax County sheriff.



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