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Jury deliberates in Md. prison bus slaying

A jury in a Baltimore civil case alleging the state was negligent in the murder of an inmate aboard a state prison bus in 2005 has begun deliberations.

Closing arguments were given Monday, and deliberations began Monday afternoon.

Assistant Attorney General Rex Gordon said in his summation that the five correctional officers aboard the bus aren’t responsible for Philip Parker Jr.’s death because they didn’t know he was in danger and couldn’t see inmate Kevin Johns strangling him in the darkened vehicle.

Plaintiffs’ attorney Samuel Shapiro asked the jury to award a full measure of justice to Parker’s parents and estate as compensation for the officers’ failure to prevent his death.

The plaintiffs are seeking $21 million. The state’s obligation is limited to $200,000 if the officers are found negligent.

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