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Death penalty sought in Pa. double slaying

May 21, 1997

By RICHARD F. BELISLE

Staff Writer

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Franklin County District Attorney John F. Nelson will ask for the death penalty in the case of Albert E. Reid, who has been charged with shooting to death his estranged wife and stepdaughter as they slept next to several young children.

Nelson said he will ask the jury to sentence Reid to death because the case meets the state's requirements for aggravated circumstances.

Reid has been charged with criminal homicide in the shootings of Carla Reid, 36, of 2204 Sollenberg Road, Chambersburg, and her daughter and Reid's stepdaughter, Diedra L. Moore, 14, while they slept in their beds with young children during the night of Dec. 27, 1996, according to court records.

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Reid, 49, is scheduled to go on trial July 21. He pleaded not guilty during an arraignment Wednesday.

Reid and Moore were killed because they were prosecution witnesses in a sexual assault case against Reid, according to a Notice of Aggravated Circumstances filed in court by Nelson. The victims were killed so they wouldn't testify against Reid at his assault trial, according to the notice. Reid had been charged with sexually assaulting Moore.

Also, the slayings occurred during the perpetration of a felony, according to court records. Reid allegedly broke into Carla Reid's house on the night of the murders, court records said.

Also, Reid knowingly created a "grave risk of death to another person in addition to the victim," according to the notice.

Nelson was referring to several young children who were sleeping in the same beds as the victims at the time of the shootings.

Carla Reid was sleeping in her bed with two of her six children, Jeremy Moore, 8, and Lorrance Reid, 5, when she was shot once in the head from less than two feet away, according to court records.

Reid killed Carla Reid first then went down the hall to the room where Diedra Moore was sleeping with Larissa Reid, Carla Reid's youngest child, court records said. Moore was also shot in the head at close range, court records said.

The two children sleeping with Carla Reid awoke later that night and found their mother covered with blood. None of the children was injured, court records said.

Before her death, Carla Reid had filed three protection from abuse orders against Reid since 1992, according to court records. The most recent was October 1996.

Nelson and Public Defender Robert Trembley, who will represent Reid at his trial, said there have been several potential death penalty cases in Franklin County in recent years, but they were settled by plea bargains before getting to trial.

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