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Court rejects appeal of Indianapolis house explosion convict

FILE - In this July 10, 2013 file photo, Bob Leonard walks to a pretrial hearing in Indianapolis. The Indiana Supreme Court on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, upheld the murder and arson convictions and life in prison without parole sentences for Leonard, who was convicted in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion in November 2012. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)
FILE - In this July 10, 2013 file photo, Bob Leonard walks to a pretrial hearing in Indianapolis. The Indiana Supreme Court on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, upheld the murder and arson convictions and life in prison without parole sentences for Leonard, who was convicted in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion in November 2012. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Thursday, August 10, 2017 05:22 pm

INDIANAPOLIS The Indiana Supreme Court has upheld the murder and arson convictions and life in prison without parole sentences for a man convicted in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion.

The court ruled unanimously Thursday in rejecting the appeal by 58-year-old Bob Leonard. It found, among other things, that there was sufficient evidence for the murder convictions and that Indiana's life without parole sentencing statute is constitutional.

The November 2012 natural gas explosion occurred at a house owned by his half brother's then-girlfriend. Prosecutors alleged that the trio planned to damage the house as part of an insurance fraud scheme. The blast killed two neighbors and damaged or destroyed dozens of homes.

A jury found Leonard guilty last year on 51 counts. He received two consecutive life sentences without parole, plus 70 years.

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