BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CBS Connecticut and AP) – A Connecticut man who was on the state’s death row for ordering the killings of a woman and her 8-year-old son has been resentenced to life in prison without the possibility of release.

The Connecticut Post reports a state judge in Bridgeport on Friday imposed the new sentence on Russell Peeler Jr. because the state has abolished the death penalty.

Authorities say Peeler had his brother, Adrian Peeler, fatally shoot Karen Clarke and her son, B.J. Brown, in their Bridgeport home in 1999. B.J. was going to testify against Russell Peeler in the 1997 killing of

Clarke’s boyfriend, Rudolph Snead Jr. Adrian Peeler is serving a 25-year prison sentence.

The state Supreme Court abolished the death penalty last year and upheld that decision in May in Russell Peeler’s appeal.

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