Texas man convicted of killing 2 loses appeal

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Associated Press

Posted on April 7, 2014 at 2:32 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 7 at 2:32 PM

HOUSTON (AP) — A federal appeals court has rejected an appeal from a man condemned for killing a police officer and another man in a shootout at a convenience store in Ferris, south of Dallas, more than 11 years ago.

Attorneys for 41-year-old Kent Sprouse raised six issues, including whether his trial jury in Ellis County improperly was prevented from considering voluntary intoxication as a factor in deciding his punishment. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against him Monday in each issue.

Evidence showed Sprouse had been using amphetamines, methamphetamines and marijuana within 48 hours of the slayings of 28-year-old Ferris police officer Harry Steinfeldt and a convenience store customer, 38-year-old Pedro Moreno of Red Oak.

Steinfeldt was able to wound Sprouse in the gun battle where he was killed.

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