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Deliberations Enter 3rd Day in Dally Case

April 02, 1998|DAWN HOBBS

The jury in the case against suspected wife-killer Michael Dally completed a second day of deliberations Wednesday without reaching a verdict.

The panel of eight men and four women left the Ventura County courthouse at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Deliberations are expected to resume at 9 a.m. today.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Lela Henke-Dobroth urged jurors in her closing argument Monday to find Dally guilty of first-degree murder, kidnapping and conspiracy--findings that could make the 37-year-old former grocery clerk eligible for the death penalty.

During her three-hour statement, Henke-Dobroth told jurors that Dally committed the ultimate act of betrayal by persuading his lover and co-defendent, Diana Haun, to kill his wife.

Sherri Dally, 35, was kidnapped, beaten and fatally stabbed May 6, 1996. A search party found her body a month later in a steep ravine outside Ventura.

Defense attorneys, however, claim Haun acted alone. In closing arguments last week, Dally attorney Robert Schwartz argued Haun was so obsessed with his client that she decided to kill his wife.

Haun, 36, was convicted in September 1997 of first-degree murder, kidnapping and conspiracy. She is serving a life sentence at a woman's prison in Chowchilla.

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