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On this date in 2003, a Virginia jury in the Washington-area sniper case sentenced Lee Boyd Malvo (a young African American) to life in prison.
This spared him from the death penalty, the fate awaiting his mentor John Allen Muhammad. Malvo's lawyers had portrayed him as an impressionable boy who had fallen under Muhammad's murderous spell. The two were convicted of a series of capital murders in a 2002 killing spree.
Malvo was convicted of two counts of capital murder for Oct. 14, 2002, killing of FBI analyst Linda Franklin, one of 10 people killed during a three-week span in the nation's capital region.