Yale lab tech pleads not guilty in murder

09:06, January 27, 2010      

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Raymond Clark III 24, is arraigned at Superior Court in New Haven, Conn. Thursday Sept. 17, 2009 in connection with the murder of Annie Le, a Yale graduate student whose body was found stuffed in the wall of the research building where they both worked. At left is Assistant Public Defender Jospeh E. Lopez. [Agencies]

An animal research technician charged with killing a 24-year-old Yale University graduate student pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a murder charge and a new count of felony murder.

Raymond Clark III is accused of strangling Annie Le in September, just days before she was to be married.

Prosecutors said in New Haven Superior Court on Tuesday that the new felony murder count had been filed against Clark. Both murder and felony murder carry 25 to 60 years in prison on conviction.

Felony murder is alleged when someone dies during the commission of a felony or attempted felony. Under Connecticut's felony murder law, prosecutors don't have to prove that a killing was intentional.

New Haven defense lawyer Hugh Keefe, who is not involved in the case, said the charge gives a jury another option if it finds that a homicide wasn't intentional.

Details of the new charge, including what the alleged felony was, were not released. Clark's lawyer, Beth Merkin, declined to comment on specifics of it.

Le vanished September 8 from the Yale medical school research building where she and Clark worked, and her body was found five days later, on what was to be her wedding day.

The motive for the killing remains unclear.

Clark, 24, remains jailed in lieu of $3 million bail.

Source: China Daily/Agencies
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