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Griffin found guilty of Belton's murder

POSTED AT 11:18 AM ON Apr. 16, 2011  (UPDATED AT 05:51 PM ON Apr. 16, 2011)

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After four days of trial, 27-year-old Michael Griffin was found guilty of the murder of IU English professor Don Belton, 53. He will be sentenced May 17 and faces 45 to 65 years in prison.

Jury members heard the testimony of multiple witnesses, listened to the 911 call and examined exhibits, which included photographs of the victim's wounds and the autopsy report. After about 12 hours of deliberation, the jury announced there was insufficient evidence of "sudden heat," a factor that under Indiana law could have lead to voluntary manslaughter and a shorter sentence than murder.

While on trial, Griffin claimed he was raped by Belton on Dec. 25, 2009. He said when he went to Belton's home Dec. 27, 2009, to confront Belton, they got into an argument. The argument resulted in Griffin stabbing Belton 22 times.

Griffin's attorney's argued the killing was the result of Griffin's rage about the alleged incident on Dec. 25.

 

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