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Convict gets new term for trying to hire hit man

SHARE Convict gets new term for trying to hire hit man

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A man already imprisoned for his role in a 1973 shooting spree that left three dead was given a life sentence for trying to hire a hit man to kill a prosecutor and former police officer.

Larry Casey, 52, had been serving a 99-year prison sentence for the 1973 crime but had been scheduled to be released in 2006 after getting good-behavior credit.

A jury convicted him Thursday on two charges of solicitation of capital murder, finding he had tried last December to hire a hit man to kill Harris County Assistant District Attorney Bert Graham and former Houston police officer David Sheetz. Graham originally prosecuted Casey, while Sheetz arrested Casey in 1973 on unrelated charges.

The same jury sentenced Casey to life in prison Friday after hearing testimony from a pair of victims who survived the 1973 shooting spree.

Karen Kurtz, who was 10 at the time of the shooting, testified that she was walking home with her sister and a friend when Casey pulled up and put a gun out of the car window. After asking Casey if it was a toy gun, Kurtz was shot.

"To re-testify 30 years later, that really takes it out of you," Kurtz said. "I think it's going to be safer for the community and for ourselves now."

Casey's lawyer, Dan Maeso, said he thought the sentence was too harsh and planned to appeal.