YANKTON, S.D. (AP) - A Yankton man has pleaded not guilty to the 2019 strangulation death of a Yankton woman.
De’Von Taye Lopez, 22, was arraigned before Judge Cheryle Gering on Thursday in the death of Deborah Lynn Schock, 61. He was arrested and charged with second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter in June.
Family members discovered Schock dead in her mobile home Sept. 7. The preliminary investigation indicated she had been dead for several days. An autopsy found injuries consistent with strangulation.
The Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan reported that the brother of De’Von Lopez was initially arrested and charged based on DNA found on Schock’s fingernails, but the case against him was dropped.
The judge set the next hearing for Aug. 3. The second-degree murder charge carries a sentence of life without parole, while first-degree manslaughter carries up to life in prison.
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