Post by SoulTrainOz on Jul 12, 2006 4:32:46 GMT -5
Quarran Covington avoided the death penalty this morning as jurors said they were deadlocked on whether to impose that sentence.
Instead, the jury chose sentences of 30 years to life for each of Covington's 2 murder victims.
Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Julie M. Lynch accepted the jury's recommendation, then added the maximum sentences of 3 years each for using a gun, 10 years for aggravated robbery and 5 years for using a gun as a convicted felon.
Covington, 34, must serve 81 years before being eligible for parole. His attorneys said he will appeal his convictions in the drug-related slayings of Anthony Wright and John Barnett in May 2005.
The Atlanta men were found shot in the back of the head in their rental car on the Near East Side. Witnesses said they came to Columbus to sell more than a kilo of cocaine and Covington spent the day with them.
The murder weapon and cocaine were never found, and Covington has denied he was the killer.
"You suffer the consequences of your choices, Mr. Covington," Lynch said after the sentencing.
The jury of 9 women and 3 men deliberated less than 4 hours before signaling their verdicts at 10 a.m. None of them stayed behind to hear the sentence.