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Jury says ex-doctor guilty in NC ballerina's death

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By RENEE ELDER
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- A jury has found a former Raleigh doctor guilty of involuntary manslaughter and other charges in the death of a 20-year-old ballerina who perished in a car crash.

Wake County jurors reached the verdict Tuesday morning. They also convicted Raymond Cook of felony death by vehicle and driving while impaired. Prosecutors had argued that he should be convicted of second-degree murder.

Prosecutors said Cook got drunk and drove up to 100 mph before slamming into the car driven by Elena Shapiro. She was an apprentice with the Carolina Ballet.

Cook's lawyers argued that he was not acting maliciously.

The jury has found there was an aggravating factor to consider in his sentencing. A judge said sentencing would take place later Tuesday.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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