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Biologist indicted in 1986 shooting of her brother

Amy Bishop, the former University of Alabama biologist who gunned down three colleagues in a departmental staff meeting last February, has been charged with murder in the 1986 death of her brother.

Bishop, who was 21 at the time, fatally shot her 18-year-old brother with their father’s shot gun. The shooting was ruled accidental, but a full investigation was never conducted. The shooting was one of several violent incidents that emerged about Bishop’s past after the Alabama shooting. Massachusetts Congressman Bill Delahunt, who in 1986 was a district attorney in the county in which her brother’s death took place, said in February that the investigation may have been incomplete; investigators never received police reports revealing that Bishop had tried to use the shotgun to steal a car from a nearby car dealership. A grand jury convened in April indicted Bishop for first degree murder yesterday (The New York Times).

Her parents, however, maintain her innocence in her brother’s death and say there is no evidence that it was anything other than an accident. In a four-page statement quoted by The Boston Globe, they also expressed anger that some people involved in the 1986 investigation had appeared on NBC’s Dateline during the grand jury deliberations. “They might as well have displayed Amy in prison stripes behind them as they spoke, because they had in effect convicted her on national TV without a trial," they said in the statement.

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