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Jury finds man guilty in death of model

Jury finds man guilty in death of model

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ROANOKE -- A Radford jury on Friday found a photographer guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the 2003 death of a model who posed in explicit photos for him.

The jury deliberated 12½ hours before convicting Bob Shell, 60, of involuntary manslaughter and seven other drugand sex-related charges. The Radford man had been charged with homicide in the death of 19-year-old Marion Franklin.

The jury recommended that Shell spend 32 years, six months in prison and pay a $5,000 fine when he is formally sentenced on Oct. 26.

Prosecutors said Shell gave Franklin a lethal dose of morphine at his studio June 3, 2003. Two people testified that they saw Shell squeeze what they believed to be morphine into Franklin's wine glass that day; Shell testified Wednesday that it was the herbal supplement echinacea.

Shell showed no reaction as the verdict was read. Some others in the courtroom, including prosecutor Chris Rehak, cried.

Hours of explicit photos and videos were shown to the jury over the eight-day trial, including pictures Shell had taken of Franklin in bondage.

Shell's lawyer, Jonathon Venzie, claimed Franklin was a regular drug user and Shell's lover and that her death was the result of her own actions. But Rehak argued Shell was infatuated with the young model and gave her morphine to incapacitate her so he could take advantage of her.


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