Suspect Found Guilty In Trash Can Murder

CLEVELAND (AP) - After more than a day of deliberations, a Cleveland jury came back with a guilty verdict for a man charged with fatally beating his girlfriend and putting her body in a trash can with muriatic acid.

Jurors began deliberating Wednesday and were told to continue Thursday in the case against Gerald Lee Thompson, 37. They came back with a verdict early Thursday afternoon.

Thompson was charged with aggravated murder, abuse of a corpse and domestic violence in the death of Nancy Pimentel, 26. He was found guilty of all three counts.

Her body was found June 10 in a trash can containing muriatic acid at the apartment complex the two shared in suburban Mayfield Heights.

Thompson was arrested in Arizona, about 16 miles from the Mexico border. Among his belongings was a piece of paper on which was written, "How long m-acid."

"

His cold, calculating behavior throughout this whole trial was obviously displayed," prosecutor Anna Faraglia said. "His actions caused the ultimate death of this woman. He's a man with no conscience."

Thompson, who is black, suggested that the real attacker might have been someone upset that he lived with Pimentel, who was white.

He testified over the objections of his attorneys.

Thompson will be sentenced next month. Prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty, but he could end up with life in prison.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)