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Suspects in UNC Death Had Criminal Past

•  Political and Legal     updated  2008/03/12 20:26

A teenager's arrest Thursday ended a violent crime spree, authorities said, that included the slaying of a graduate student at Duke University and the University of North Carolina's student body president.

Police tracked Laurence Alvin Lovette Jr. to a Durham home, where he surrendered before dawn. The 17-year-old is charged with first-degree murder in the college students' deaths.

Court records show that Lovette, while on probation, had been arrested several times and charged with felonies ranging from burglary to car theft during the months between the two slayings. He was released on bond in those cases and court hearings were pending.

A manhunt started after Eve Carson, 22, a popular student leader at UNC, was found shot death last week on a street about a mile from the campus in nearby Chapel Hill.

Tips generated by several ATM and convenience store surveillance photos led to charges against Lovette, who police said appeared to be driving Carson's Toyota Highlander, and a second suspect in the back seat.

Police have not said whether they think Lovette or the second man charged in her death, 21-year-old Demario James Atwater, pulled the trigger.

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