Court denies Rita Bixby's appeal in 2003 deaths

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) -- A South Carolina court has denied the appeal of a 79-year-old woman convicted as an accessory in the 2003 killings of two Abbeville County police officers in a dispute over a highway project.

The Greenville News reported that the Court of Appeals denied Rita Bixby's argument that her son's prison letters should not have been used in her prosecution. Bixby was sentenced in 2007 to life in prison.

The state Supreme Court last year upheld Steven Bixby's death sentence. He was convicted of shooting Sheriff's Sgt. Danny Wilson in 2003 when he knocked on the family's door. Constable Donnie Ouzts was killed when he went to check on Wilson.

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The shootings started a 14-hour standoff.

Rita Bixby's attorney, Elizabeth Franklin-Best, says she will ask the court to reconsider.

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