PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) _ The state Supreme Court has upheld the murder conviction of a Providence man in the killing of a 15-year-old girl who was gunned down the day before she was to testify against him in another murder case.
The Providence Journal reports that the Supreme Court affirmed the murder conviction of Charles "Manny'' Pona on Thursday. He's serving life in prison for ordering Jennifer Rivera's killing, which led to an overhaul of the state's witness protection program.
Rivera was scheduled to testify against Pona in the 1999 slaying 17-year-old Hector Feliciano, but she was killed in front of her Providence home in May 2000. The gunman who killed Rivera and another man also were convicted and sent to prison.
Pona also is serving a life prison sentence for Feliciano's killing.