Galileo High grad convicted of murder 

A former Galileo High School football player and youth guidance counselor murdered a 17-year-old Lincoln High School student in late 2004, a San Francisco jury found Tuesday.

Royce Miller, now 23, was found guilty of second-degree murder for strangling to death Maxina Danner on Sept. 27, 2004. Danner’s body was found wrapped in a blanket near McLaren Park that same day.

Miller was convicted largely on the evidence of telephone records that placed him with Danner the day she died, and on the testimony of his friend Patrick Thomas, who prosecutors said helped him dump the body.

But no physical evidence connected Miller to the crime. During the trial, Miller’s defense attorney, Ira Barg, pointed to Miller’s friend Maurice Powell as Danner’s killer. Powell, a crack dealer with a criminal record, refused to testify during the trial, citing his Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself.

The jury deliberated for five and one half hours following the three-week trial, over which San Francisco Superior Court Judge Cynthia Lee presided. Sentencing is scheduled for May 18, 2007. Miller faces a maximum statutory penalty of 15 years to life in state prison.

amartin@examiner.com

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