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Bill makes school shooting deaths eligible for death penalty

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – A bill inspired by the slaying of a Purdue University student would make a shooting at a school grounds for the death penalty.

Republican Sen. Brandt Hershman of Buck Creek says he authored the bill in response to the Jan. 21, 2014, death of Purdue University student Andrew Boldt.

Cody Cousins pleaded guilty to fatally shooting and stabbing the Wisconsin native and was sentenced to 65 years in prison. He committed suicide in his cell in October.

Tippecanoe County Prosecutor Pat Harrington tells the Journal & Courier he couldn’t seek the death penalty for Cousins because the situation didn’t fall under one of the “aggravating circumstances” that allows prosecutors to seek the death penalty or life without parole in murder cases.