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The Daily Ardmoreite
  • Judge hands down maximum sentence

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  • After being free on a $100,000 bail since July 23, Ronald Frantz will once again be behind bars after District Court Judge Wallace Coppedge sentenced him to the maximum term of 22½ years for being an accessory to the murder of Zachary Blackburn in February 2012. The final 2½ years will be on probation.
    Franz's daughter, Rhonda, is currently serving a life sentence after a conviction for the murder a year ago.
    According to testimony, Frantz shot Blackburn when he learned he was in his daughter's room. After the shooting, he helped the still-alive Blackburn into Rhonda's car where he said he assumed she would take him to the hospital. Rhonda was arrested some time later with Blackburn dying in the passenger seat of her car.
    Ronald's wife, Linda, testified that he had nothing to do with the shooting.
    A video was shown during the hearing of Linda during her initial interview with police after the incident in which she said Rhonda told her, "I shot Zach."
    On Oct. 10, Judge Coppedge reportedly told Frantz, "I didn't believe a word you said," adding that his testimony had been inconsistent and that he believed what his wife had said in her interviews.
    Frantz has 90 days to appeal the decision.

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