- Associated Press - Monday, October 17, 2016

MUNSTER, Ind. (AP) - A man who struck a deal with prosecutors to avoid facing the death penalty after being convicted of killing a Gary police officer will be released from prison next year.

The Times of Northwest Indiana reports (https://bit.ly/2dvU3cl) Zolo Agona Azania is scheduled to be released on Feb. 8. Allen County juries sentenced Azania, formerly known as Rufus Averhart, to death twice for killing Gary police Lt. George Yaros during a 1981 bank robbery. The Indiana Supreme Court overturned the sentences but upheld the conviction in 2008. Prosecutors said at the time they agreed to the deal because many witnesses had died or were no longer available to testify.

Azania is being held at the Miami Correctional Facility near Bunker Hill, 60 miles north of Indianapolis.

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Information from: The Times, https://www.nwitimes.com



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