Berks

Once on death row, man given new sentence for 1996 murders

READING, Pa. - A man who spent nearly two decades on death row for the murders of two men in Berks County could become a free man in the coming years.

Senior Judge Scott Keller on Tuesday re-sentenced Shawn Bridges to 23 to 80 years in state prison. Bridges, now 40, has already served a little more than 21 years behind bars.

Bridges was sentenced to death in 1998 for the murders of cousins Damon and Gregory Banks, whose bodies were found riddled with bullets off Neversink Road in Exeter Township in December 1996.

A federal judge later overturned Bridges' first-degree murder conviction.

A second man, Roderick Johnson, remains on Pennsylvania's death row for his conviction; a third man pleaded no contest to lesser charges in the case.


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