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Prosecutor in Scott Peterson case dies

Sept. 11, 2007 at 9:03 PM

MODESTO, Calif., Sept. 11 (UPI) -- Jim Brazelton, the former California district attorney who prosecuted Scott Peterson for the murder of his wife Laci and her fetus, has died at age 66.

Brazelton died Monday at Memorial Medical Center in Modesto, Calif., where he had been treated for several days. The cause of death was not disclosed but the Stanislaus County District Attorney's Office issued a statement indicating he died of natural causes.

Brazelton ran the district attorney's office for nine years and successfully prosecuted all 35 murder cases he handled, The Modesto Bee reported Tuesday. Five of those convictions led to the death penalty, including Peterson, who was convicted in 2004.

"He was a tough prosecutor," Assistant District Attorney Carol Shipley said. "He was one of the best in the courtroom. And he had a heart of gold when it came to friends and family."

He is survived by his wife Patricia, three sons and a stepson.

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