Scientologist Rex Fowler Found Guilty Of First-Degree Murder

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After just two hours of deliberation, an Adams County jury found Rex Fowler guilty of first-degree murder in the slaying of his former business partner.

Fowler, 59, was immediately sentenced to life in prison. […]

[Thomas] Ciancio died Dec. 30, 2009 while he went to the office to collect a severance check from Fowler Software Design. Ciancio had decided to leave the company after the founder, 58-year-old Rex Fowler, had diverted $175,000 in company funds to Fowler’s church, the Church of Scientology.

At the start of the trial the judge said the legal proceedings were about the facts of the case and not about Fowler’s ‘religion.’

However, last year ABC News reported:

Among the mysteries in software firm founder William Rex Fowler’s alleged killing of ex-partner Thomas Ciancio is whether Fowler’s self-professed devotion to the Church of Scientology played a role in the workplace shooting

References to the Church of Scientology also repeatedly cropped up in Fowler’s 11-page arrest affidavit.

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This post was last updated: Mar. 5, 2011