Autopsy Photos Will be Shown in KFC Murder Trial

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

BRYAN, Texas -- Jurors in the trial of a Tyler man accused in the 1983 deaths of five people abducted from a restaurant will be allowed to see autopsy photos.

A judge in Bryan on Friday ruled in the capital murder trial of Darnell Hartsfield.

The victims had been at a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Kilgore.

The Tyler Morning Telegraph, in its online editions Friday, reported attorney Don Killingsworth objected to the photos being shown in the courtroom.

But prosecutor Lisa Tanner said families of the victims had been warned and that the photos are necessary to back up testimony from a pathologist.

If convicted, Hartsfield faces an automatic life prison term. Prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty. The convicted burglar and drug dealer already was serving life for perjury when DNA testing tied him to the KFC killings.

Hartsfield's cousin, Romeo Pinkerton, in 2007 accepted a plea deal on five capital murder charges and must serve life in prison.

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