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Published September 13, 2013, 09:06 AM

Spirit Lake murder suspect once inquired about punishment

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A man accused of killing two children on the Spirit Lake Reservation in North Dakota once asked investigators what the maximum sentence was for the crime.

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A man accused of killing two children on the Spirit Lake Reservation in North Dakota once asked investigators what the maximum sentence was for the crime.

Jurors in the murder trial of Valentino "Tino" Bagola on Thursday saw a videotape of a jailhouse meeting between Bagola and two FBI agents two days before he was indicted in the May 2011 deaths of 9-year-old Destiny Shaw-DuBois and her 6-year-old brother, Travis DuBois Jr.

At one point, Bagola asked the agents, "What's the most you could get for it?" When one of the agents told him he could get life in prison, Bagola asked if a lighter sentence could result from a plea bargain, The Forum newspaper reported.

Authorities allege Bagola stabbed the two children to death after sexually assaulting the girl, and that he confessed to killing them. They allege Bagola was angry with the children's father but could not find him and instead took out his rage on the children.

FBI fingerprint examiner Shannon Prince testified Thursday that Bagola's palm print was found on a bloody computer in the room where the two slain children were found, but that authorities couldn't determine exactly when the print was left. Prince was unable to recover fingerprints from knives taken from the DuBois home.

Bagola's defense maintains the children's father, Travis Dubois Sr., killed the children in the middle of a multi-day drinking binge, and that he confessed.

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