- Associated Press - Thursday, July 9, 2015

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - A judge ordered Michigan’s mandatory no-parole sentence for a man convicted of killing an aspiring teacher 25 years ago, saying he attacked the victim “like he was nothing.”

Aurelias Marshall was convicted of first-degree murder in June after jurors were urged to keep working despite being deadlocked twice.

Prosecutors said the death of Joel Battaglia was unsolved for years because Marshall had intimidated and threatened witnesses, including a brother who finally testified at trial.

“It’s hard for me because I did not do this,” Marshall, 56, told the judge. “I’ve never met Joel Battaglia.”

Battaglia was 23 when he was robbed and fatally beaten after leaving Mulligan’s Pub in 1990.

“You clearly killed this man,” Kent County Judge Mark Trusock said. “You beat him down to the ground like he was nothing. In my opinion, you are about the lowest form of a person there possibly is.”

Prosecutors said Marshall has a connection to another case. They said he coerced a woman and her daughter to accuse a teenager of sexual assault in the early 1990s.

Quentin Carter spent about 17 years in prison. His conviction was recently erased at the request of prosecutor William Forsyth.


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