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Federal death penalty case to be held in Lexington

September 30, 2014

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — An inmate charged with killing a fellow prisoner at a high-security federal prison tucked away in the Appalachian region of Kentucky will be tried in Lexington.

Prosecutors and attorneys for 31-year-old John Travis Millner agreed to the location on Monday.

Millner has pleaded not guilty to murder in the death of 35-year-old Vincent Earl Smith. Both were housed at the United States Penitentiary Big Sandy in January 2009.

Prosecutors are seeking a death sentence for Millner if he’s convicted. Prosecutors say Millner used a homemade ice pick on Smith before strangling him to death at the prison in Inez, Kentucky.

Millner is serving a life sentence without parole for shooting a person with a high-powered rifle on New Year’s Eve in 2002 in Washington.

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