Man pleads not guilt in 'scaring' death

February 19, 2009 11:34:21 AM PST
A man accused by authorities of scaring a North Carolina woman to death after breaking into her home after an attempted bank robbery has pleaded not guilty to federal charges. [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

Authorities say Larry Whitfield broke into the home of 79-year-old Mary Parnell after a failed attempt last September to hold up a Gastonia, N.C., credit union with another man. Officials say an autopsy found the woman died of a heart attack brought on by the shock of the home invasion.

Court records show Whitfield pleaded not guilty Thursday to federal charges that include causing a death as a result of a bank robbery. He faces a maximum of life in prison if convicted of those charges.

Whitfield already faces a state charge of murder in Parnell's death.

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