Local News

Man to Get 3rd Sentencing Hearing

Posted May 9, 1998 7:00 a.m. EDT

— A Raleigh man on death row for the rape and murder of a child will return to court.

The state Supreme Court has ruled Bernardino Zuniga deserves a third sentencing hearing. He was first sentenced to death in 1985 for the rape and murder of 7-year-old April Sweet. The sentence was overturned.

He received the death penalty after a second hearing in 1995.

The Supreme Court has ruled the judge in the second hearing did not instruct jurors that Zuniga's mental retardation could be grounds for a lenient sentence.