Canada

Larry Fisher found guilty in Gail Miller killing

Larry Fisher has been convicted of first degree murder for a crime he committed almost 31 years ago -- a crime David Milgaard spent 23 years in prison for.

After 13 hours of deliberations, jurors found Fisher guilty of the rape and stabbing death of 20-year-old nursing aide Gail Miller in Saskatoon in January 1969.

Fisher showed no emotion as the decision was announced. He was whisked away in an RCMP cruiser without commenting.

Fisher faces an automatic life sentence. But it's not clear when he will be eligible for parole. Under the current law, there is no parole for 25 years. But in 1969, there was no minimum parole.

Sentencing arguments will be held Jan. 4. His lawyer, Brian Beresh, says he's obviously disappointed woth Monday's verdict and say they plan to appeal immediately after sentencing.

Fisher has already spent more than 23 of his 50 years for seven other sexual assault convictions.

Gail Miller's sister, Doreen Dahlem, was in the courtroom every day of the trial. She smiled and bowed her head when the verdict was announced.

Crown prosecutor Al Johnston says he's relieved with the outcome. "It's been a long haul," he said outside the court house.

Johnston described the Millers as an astonishing family and he hoped the verdict would bring them some peace. He also hoped it would bring some peace to Milgaard's life.

Milgaard was convicted of the crime in 1970. The Supreme Court of Canada set aside his conviction in 1992 and he was cleared by DNA evidence five years later.

The Saskatchewan government awarded Milgaard $10 million earlier this year for his wrongful conviction.

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