Killer Loses Appeal in Notorious Austin Case

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) A former University of Texas student has lost an appeal of his murder conviction for the 2005 slaying of a 21-year-old woman whose body was found in the bathtub of his apartment with her head and hands cut off.

Colton Pitonyak is serving 55 years in prison for Jennifer Cave's killing. Her slaying remains one of the most notorious in Austin in recent years.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday rejected claims from Pitonyak that Travis County prosecutors improperly withheld what his attorneys argued was a jailhouse confession from a friend and jealous lover, Laura Hall. She's now serving 10 years in prison on charges related to the murder.

Pitonyak and Hall fled to Mexico where they were arrested days after Cave's body was found.

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