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US judge orders new trial for man on death row
MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) -- A U.S. District Court judge has ordered a new trial for a Vermont man on federal death row for the 2000 killing of a North Clarendon woman abducted outside a Rutland supermarket.
Federal Judge William Sessions III issued the order Thursday on the appeal filed by attorneys for Donald Fell.
Fell was sentenced to death in 2005 after a jury found him guilty of the abduction of 53-year-old Terry King as she was arriving for work.
Fell's attorneys argued the jury that found Fell guilty and later sentenced him to death was tainted because one of the jurors conducted his own investigation into what happened outside of court.
In his decision, Sessions said the juror "violated the fundamental integrity of Fell's trial by deliberately undertaking an independent investigation."