Accused of murder, Alabama professor faces death penalty

Reuters News
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Posted: May 26, 2011 12:03 PM
Accused of murder, Alabama professor faces death penalty

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) - Prosecutors will seek the death penalty for Amy Bishop, a former biology professor accused of shooting six colleagues during a staff meeting at the University of Alabama at Huntsville.

Three professors died in the February 12, 2010, rampage allegedly sparked by the Harvard-trained biologist's denial of tenure.

"We confirmed that we are seeking the death penalty on record in open court," Madison County District Attorney Robert Broussard told Reuters on Thursday, declining further comment.

Under Alabama's capital punishment law, the death penalty may be sought against individuals accused of intentionally killing multiple people.

Four women are currently on death row in the state, three for killing their children and one for contracting to kill her husband, according to the Alabama Department of Corrections.

Bishop, 46, also has been charged with the 1986 murder of her brother in Massachusetts, a death that was ruled accidental at the time.

Her attorneys have said they would seek an insanity plea.

(Reporting by Verna Gates; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Peter Bohan)