Conviction upheld for 1990 Battaglia murderer

Murder conviction upheld

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - The Michigan Court of Appeals has upheld the conviction of a man serving life in prison for the 1990 murder of Joel Battaglia.

Battaglia was walking home in the city's Eastown neighborhood when he was attacked on the sidewalk along Lake Drive.

The case went unsolved for more than two decades until investigators announced the arrest of Aurelius Marshall in December  2014. Marshall has been a familiar name to investigators, but it wasn't until the cold case was reopened that the pieces fell together.

►Related: No parole in case of Grand Rapids man killed in 1990

Police say Battaglia was killed during a robbery.

Marshall challenged his conviction on several fronts, saying the judge's instructions to jurors were "coercive.''

However, the Court of Appeals upheld his conviction in court today. Marshall is serving a life sentence at a state prison in Ionia.

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