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Philadelphia Teen’s Trial in Murder of WW II Vet Nears End

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Hanson_Tony--NEW Tony Hanson
Tony Hanson has spent his entire illustrious career at KYW Newsradio,...
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By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A Philadelphia prosecutor today told a jury that the 87-year-old World War II veteran who was gunned down in his driveway during a robbery was killed “for nothing — literally nothing.”

During closing arguments this morning, prosecutor Thomas Lipscomb said defendant India Spellman — now 19, but 17 at the time of the murder — admitted to police that she and co-defendant Von Combs wanted money, but there was a struggle.

Victim George Greaves, 87, apparently resisted and was shot, the gun against his chest.  The bullet went through his heart. He died in the driveway outside his home, and the robbers fled with nothing (see previous story).

Police say Spellman and Combs, just 14 at the time of the crime, admitted that they had been out robbing, but each blamed the other for the shooting.

Defense attorney Harry Seay, in his summation, told the jury that the confession was fabricated by police and eyewitnesses are mistaken; he cited discrepancies in their testimony.

Spellman pleaded not guilty before the jury but did not take the witness stand.

Combs was charged and convicted as a juvenile (see related story).

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