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Murder Case Given to Jury

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The fate of a 35-year-old nurse accused in her husband's 2005 death is now in the hands of a jury.

Michelle Michael is charged with first-degree murder and arson.

The Kanawha County jury got the case following closing arguments today, one day after the Morgantown woman took the stand to deny killing James Michael.

Prosecutors say she injected him with a lethal dose of a paralyzing drug. They allege she then tried to burn the body and their bedroom to cover her tracks.

Jurors were told it could have taken the victim a half hour to die and that he would have been able to think, and to know what was happening to him.

Michelle Michael's defense is suggesting the death was a suicide.

She admitted when she testified that she lied to investigators. But says she was only trying to hide an extramarital affair and the fact that she left work without permission on the morning of the fire.

The trial was moved from Monongalia County because of publicity surrounding the case.

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