A Polk County jury today announced a guilty verdict in the murder trial of Donald Piper. The same jury that reported Friday it was deadlocked after thirty hours of deliberation today announced it had reached a verdict. The jury heard from more than fifty witnesses in the five weeks of Piper’s trial for the 1993 slaying of Patricia Lange at a motel where he was maintenance director. The guilty verdict means an automatic life sentence for Piper, if he doesn’t appeal. In August, Piper goes on trial for the 1997 slaying of a hotel maid in another case.
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