A Harvard-educated former biology professor convicted of killing three people and injuring three others during a 2010 faculty meeting at the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) will not face an additional murder charge in Massachusetts for the 1986 shooting death of her brother.
An Alabama court recently sentenced Bishop, 47, to life in prison without parole.
On September 10, jurors deliberated for just 20 minutes before returning a conviction, according to the Los Angeles Times. Bishop had already pleaded guilty to the charges against her, but under Alabama law defendants must stand trial for capital charges.
Bishop’s guilty plea in Alabama spared her the death penalty.
In a 2010, the Boston Herald reported that an anonymous family source called Bishop “a far-left political extremist who was ‘obsessed’ with President Obama to the point of being off-putting.”
According to the Associated Press, police investigator Charlie Gray testified that Bishop had denied killing anyone. In court, she shook her head whenever the judge or prosecutors characterized the shootings as intentional.
Gray also testified that police determined that anger was Bishop’s motive. She had recently been denied tenure and, thus, her career at UAH was likely over.
During courtroom proceedings, Bishop evaded the gaze of family members of the victims and two people who survived her murder binge, the Huntsville Times reported.
Bishop showed no emotion when the jury announced its verdict.
Norfolk County Massachusetts District Attorney Michael Morrissey indicated his plans to withdraw the Massachusetts indictment issued against Bishop two years ago. He said that the capital murder conviction in Alabama assures that she will remain in prison until she dies.
“The penalty we would seek for a first degree murder conviction is already in place,” Morrissey told The Boston Globe.
Morrissey added that his office could reopen the case should Bishop escape punishment in the future. Such an event is unlikely, though, because Bishop waived her right to appeal by pleading guilty.
There is no statute of limitation on first or second degree murder in Massachusetts, where the death penalty was abolished in 1984.
After she was arrested for the UAH shooting, Massachusetts authorities reopened the investigation of brother’s death. Bishop shot her brother to death at the Bishop family’’ Braintree, Mass home in 1986. At the time, he incident that was ruled an accident.
The Norfolk County District Attorney eventually indicted Bishop for her brother’s murder.
Bishop attempted suicide in June 2010 while she was detained in Alabama a few days after the Norfolk County indictment.
Bishop was also suspected in a mail bombing attempt against Dr. Paul Rosenberg in 1993, according to the Boston Herald. Rosenberg, a Harvard Medical School professor and a physician, supervised Bishop at a neurobiology lab at Boston Children’s Hospital.