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The Nation

July 13, 1986

A 16-year-old girl who masterminded the robbery and stabbing death of an elderly Bible teacher in Indiana was sentenced to die in the electric chair. The prosecutor in the case said Paula Cooper was the youngest person to receive the death sentence in modern legal history. Cooper admitted planning and leading three other Gary teen-agers in the May, 1985, holdup and stabbing of Ruth Pelke, 78. The others received prison sentences ranging from 35 to 60 years.

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