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'Black Widow's' antifreeze murder trial to start

By Emanuella Grinberg
Court TV
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(Court TV) -- Firefighter Randy Thompson and police officer Glenn Turner never knew each other, but they had at least one thing in common: Julia Lynn Turner.

She was married to Turner and later romantically involved with Thompson.

But the similarities don't end there, leading Georgia prosecutors to believe that Lynn Turner killed both men, nearly six years apart, to collect money from their deaths.

Lynn Turner has already been convicted of malice murder for the death of her husband, who died from ethylene glycol poisoning in 1995.

On Monday, she will stand trial on charges that she poisoned Thompson, who was her boyfriend and the father of her children, in the exact same manner.

This time, however, she faces the death penalty instead of life in prison. If convicted and sentenced to death, she will become the second woman on Georgia's death row.

Much of the evidence in this trial will be identical to that heard by the jury that convicted her in 2004. (Full coverageexternal link)

Turner, who maintains her innocence in both deaths, has appealed her first conviction, arguing that without evidence of the similarities in the two deaths there is nothing linking her to either crime.

And just as they did in her first trial, Turner's lawyers attempted to keep out the "similar transaction evidence." That motion was denied.

"We will be putting up similar transaction evidence," said Forsyth County District Attorney Penny Penn. "There will be evidence from the Cobb County case."

Glenn Turner died March 3, 1995, from what was initially determined to be an irregular heartbeat. One week after his death, Turner moved in with Thompson, with whom she had already begun an affair several months prior.

But it was not until Thompson died in 2001 under similar circumstances that authorities exhumed the body of Glenn Turner and performed another autopsy.

In both cases, the two men exhibited flu-like symptoms before being taken to the emergency room. They both died less than 24 hours after they left the hospital, from what a coroner initially determined to be heart failure.

Further examination, however, ultimately revealed traces of ethylene glycol, a byproduct of antifreeze, in the two men's bodies. During Turner's trial for the death of her husband, Cobb County prosecutors labeled the defendant a "black widow" who murdered both men for financial gain.

After her husband's death, Turner received more than $150,000 in benefits and interest from his life insurance and pension. Her earnings from Thompson's death, however, were significantly lower, about $36,000.

Jury selection begins Monday in Forsyth County Superior Court, but Penn has not discounted the possibility that the trial may have to move to another county to find a jury.

Turner's first trial was moved from Cobb County because of difficulties finding a panel.

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Julia Lynn Turner, already convicted of murdering her husband, is going on trial for allegedly killing her boyfriend.



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