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Son of executed inmate is sentenced to life in prison

HOUSTON (AP) — The 22-year-old son of an infamous Texas death row inmate executed last June was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday for the murder of a longtime friend.

Prosecutors did not pursue the death penalty against Gary Lee Hawkins, who will be eligible for parole in 2040.

Hawkins is the son of Gary Graham, who was put to death last year for a 1981 robbery-murder. Graham's claim of innocence drew worldwide support from death penalty opponents and black activists.

At the time of the execution, Hawkins was in jail awaiting trial for the murder of 32-year-old Melvin Ray Pope, fatally shot in the head as he drove through Houston a year ago Wednesday.