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AUSTIN (AP) – The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld a 65-year prison sentence for an ex-University of North Texas quarterback convicted in 2009 of leading a Dallas burglary ring blamed for $1 million worth of thefts.

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Damon West sought a new punishment hearing in the case involving more than 50 break-ins.

The appeals court Wednesday agreed that West’s lawyer did not adequately investigate and present mitigating evidence, but said the appeal doesn’t show the deficiency would have changed his penalty.

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The 2007 and 2008 cases became known as the “Uptown burglaries,” based on the crimes in the Uptown Dallas neighborhood.

West played at UNT in the mid-1990s before being injured. He was paroled last November while his appeal was pending. A parole violation could return him to prison.

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