Plea No Bargain

Gamble of a lifetime

Harry Seigler, on trial in Richmond for robbery and murder, was sitting in a courthouse jail cell one afternoon last week, awaiting the jury's verdict. Charged with robbing a local insurance salesman last December and then slashing his throat, Seigler, 30, had pleaded not guilty.

The jurors had begun deliberating around 3 in the afternoon, and it was now around 6:30 p.m. Prosecutor Warren Von Schuch was worried. As he later put it, "The longer a [jury] panel is out, the worse shape we're in." And so he proposed a deal...

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