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Families Fight To Keep Killer Behind Bars

A man the Onslow County Sheriff calls the most brutal killer he's ever seen is once again up for parole. The victim's families are now once again fighting to keep Marcus Shrader behind bars. Marcus Shrader, who is now 65, killed Cheryl Potter Boyd in Jacksonville in 1974. Shrader was also charged with murdering three other women in Jacksonville, that same year. He did not go to trial in those other three cases. For Cheryl's murder, Shrader was sentenced to death. That sentence was changed to life in prison after the U.S. Supreme court ruled the death penalty unconstitutional in 1976. That decision meant Shrader would be eligible for parole. Last year, for the first time, parole officials considered Shrader's possible release. And now they are about to do it again. In just a few weeks, on September 21, the parole commission will once again decide whether or not to consider Shrader for parole. The sister of Becky Taylor of Beaufort County is among those Shrader was accused of killing. Now, Taylor, her family and friends are writing, calling, and visiting the parole board in hopes the members will see the impact Shrader had on their lives. If Shrader is paroled, he will most likely then have to serve a 20 year federal sentence for a bank robbery he forced one of the victims to assist him with before he killed her. Shrader was not the only convicted killer who benefited from the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 1976. There were 117 death row inmates in North Carolina who had their death sentences changed to life in prison.


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