Death sentence upheld for killer of 2 teen girls

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A divided Ohio Supreme Court has upheld the death sentence of a man who killed two teenage girls in Cincinnati despite what the court called improper remarks by a prosecutor arguing for death.

A jury convicted Anthony Kirkland in 2010 of aggravated murder, attempted rape and other charges in the 2006 death of 14-year-old Casonya Crawford and the 2009 death of 13-year-old Esme Kenney, both Cincinnati teenagers.

Before his trial began Kirkland also pleaded guilty to the slayings of two women.

The court’s 4-3 decision Tuesday rejected arguments by attorneys for Kirkland that the prosecutor’s remarks — which included implying that without a death sentence the girls’ deaths would go unpunished — inflamed the jury to the point he should have been resentenced.

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