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Pine Valley

April 27, 1988

A sailor who slit his former roommate's throat and left his body in Pine Valley was sentenced Tuesday to 26 years to life in state prison.

Lawrence Morris, 29, a Navy submarine crew member based in San Diego, received the term from San Diego Superior Court Judge William Kennedy, who also fined him $100.

Morris was convicted of first-degree murder March 29 in the stabbing death of Scott Hill, 27, of San Diego.

Hill's throat was cut in March, 1987, his genitals were cut off and the body was not discovered until April 14, 1987, by campers in Pine Valley.

Still awaiting trial on June 6 is co-defendant Douglas Ingham, 24, formerly of Lakeside and El Cajon. Morris admitted in his trial that he slit Hill's throat.

Morris testified that he was angry at Hill for a purported attempt by the Navy instructor to rape his wife. His attorney, Frank Nageotte, had urged the jury to convict Morris of voluntary manslaughter, saying he acted in a heat of passion.

Nageotte made requests to reduce the charge to second-degree murder or manslaughter, but Kennedy denied them.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Dan Lamborn said there was evidence of planning in the murder.

"This was a case of deliberation and premeditation," said Lamborn.

The judge described the murder as being committed "in a cold-blooded, calculating manner."

Morris' attorney filed an appeal of the conviction.

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