SD high court upholds Briley Piper death penalty

The South Dakota Supreme Court has upheld an Alaska man's death sentence for the March 2000 killing of another man near Spearfish.

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by Associated Press

PIERRE, SD- The South Dakota Supreme Court has upheld an Alaska man's death sentence for the March 2000 killing of another man near Spearfish. The high court also rejected Briley Piper's request to withdraw his earlier guilty plea. Piper, now 32, admitted his role in the killing of 19-year-old Chester Allan Poage. The state Supreme Court in 2009 overturned a trial judge's decision to sentence Piper to death, saying a jury should decide his fate. A jury then sentenced Piper to death in August 2011. The Supreme Court says Piper's death sentence is not excessive or disproportionate to similar cases when considering the nature of his actions. Another man involved in Poage's killing was executed and a third got life in prison.

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