A jury took just under two hours Friday to convict Troy Michael Kell of aggravated murder in the stabbing death of fellow prison inmate Lonnie Blackmon.

Blackmon was stabbed 67 times on July 6, 1994, at the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison in what prosecutors said was a racially motivated murder.Sixth District Judge David Mower scheduled a penalty hearing for Monday. The same 12-member jury that convicted Kell, 28, will decide whether to sentence him to death or life in prison. Kell already is serving a term of life in prison without parole for a Nevada murder.

Shortly before deliberations began at 12:50 p.m., prosecutors told the jury that Blackmon was far from a model citizen but did not deserve to be stabbed to death by Kell in a racially motivated attack.

"Lonnie Blackmon was not a Boy Scout. He had a reputation as a rogue and a strong arm," Assistant Utah Attorney General Scott Reed said during closing statements. "Lonnie Blackmon did not deserve to have the remainder of his sentence changed to the death penalty by the defendant."

Prosecutors contended the killing was racially motivated and premeditated. Kell, who is white, testified he is a white separatist but not a racist, and that Blackmon, who was black, had threatened to kill him.

"The execution of Lonnie Blackmon took time, almost three minutes," Reed said. "Witnesses describe the defendant's demeanor as calm, cold, businesslike, doing a job."

However, defense attorney Stephen McCaughey contended Kell killed Blackmon in self-defense. He told the jury that precludes them from sentencing Kell to death.

"If you feel that the state has proven aggravated murder beyond a reasonable doubt and returned a verdict of guilty, then so be it," McCaughey said. "We'll then move on to the more difficult part to decide is the death penalty justified and the only appropriate punishment."

Kell and Blackmon were transferred to Utah from other states. Kell had been serving two life sentences in Nevada for a 1986 murder and Blackmon was serving a 10-year sentence for theft and aggravated robbery in Arkansas.

During the weeklong trial, several inmates gave testimony depicting both Kell and Blackmon as violent prisoners.

Inmate James Madsen testified Blackmon shouted death threats to Kell and carried homemade knives. Another inmate, Francisco Colon, said Kell screamed racist remarks at minority prisoners after he killed Blackmon.

Last week, the jury was shown a video that allegedly depicts Kell stabbing Blackmon while another inmate, identified as Eric T. Daniels, held Blackmon's legs.

Daniels, also charged with aggravated murder in the slaying, faces trial Aug. 1. He is serving one to 15 years for forgery.