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Jury convicts Lepsch in killings

Jury convicts Lepsch in killings Click to Enlarge Photo:

Jul 31, 2013 at 4:51 am

LaCROSSE, Wisc. (AP) A jury in western Wisconsin has convicted a Minnesota man of fatally shooting a La Crosse photography store owner and his teenage son in a robbery.

The jury deliberated four hours Tuesday before convicting 40-year-old Jeffrey Lepsch. The Dakota, Minn., man was found guilty of killing 56-year-old Paul Petras and his 19-year-old son A.J. in May's Photo in downtown La Crosse on Sept. 15 and then cleaning out their store of about $17,000 worth of equipment.

Lepsch faces a life sentence.

Prosecutor Tim Gruenke says the victims' family is satisfied with the verdict but adds, "it's hard to be happy." The prosecution argued Lepsch needed the camera equipment to sell for cash to support his family. Lepsch's attorney called the state's evidence a "mirage."

Mike Tanner

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