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Jury Returns Second Death Sentence Police Murder Case

May 2, 1996

NEW ORLEANS (AP) _ A suspected drug dealer who killed a woman on a former police officer’s orders should be executed, a jury said Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan is bound to impose the jury’s verdict when Paul ``Cool″ Hardy, 28, is formally sentenced.

The jury found last week that the former New Orleans police officer, Len Davis, should be executed.

Kim Groves, a 32-year-old mother of three, was gunned down in front of her house in October 1994, the day after filing a complaint accusing Davis of pistol-whipping a teen-ager.

Davis, 31, and Hardy were convicted last week of conspiracy, civil rights violations and the premeditated killing of a federal witness. They are the first people sentenced to death in a civil rights case, according to Dave Bruck of the Federal Death Penalty Resource Counsel Project.

The investigation of Groves’ death grew out of a federal sting operation in which Davis and others eventually indicted for allegedly protecting a stash of illegal drugs. Davis still faces trial on that charge.

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