Former Salina pleads not guilty to murder
By the Salina Journal
Salina's former building official pleaded not guilty Friday in Orange County, Calif., to murdering his wife 16 years ago.
A pretrial hearing for Paul M. Curry, 54, has been scheduled for May 6, said Farrah Emami, spokeswoman for the Orange County District Attorney's Office. Curry is being held without bail pending trial, she said.
Curry is charged with one count of felony special-circumstance murder in connection with the 1994 poisoning death of his then-wife, Linda L. Curry, 50.
Salina city officials expressed shock in November when Curry was arrested on an Orange County warrant and accused of poisoning Linda Curry between July 1, 1993, and June 10, 1994, for financial gain. Upon Linda Curry's death, Curry collected $400,000 in life insurance.
Authorities from Orange County picked Curry up in Salina and took him to California in early December.
Curry had been hired by the city March 1. He had come here from North Las Vegas, Nev., where he had worked as senior plans examiner and interim building official.
Orange County authorities said they had suspected Curry at the time of Linda Curry's death but didn't have sufficient proof to take the case to trial until new evidence became available recently.
Under California law, Curry faces either life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty, if convicted.
Photo : The murderer Paul M. Curry