(LAPEER) -- A jury has convicted a 43-year-old Sandusky man of felony murder and home invasion in the 2006 slaying of an 86-year-old Lapeer County woman. Frank Choate faces a mandatory term of life in prison without parole when he is sentenced January 14. Defense attorney David Brown says Choate maintains his innocence. An appeal is planned following Friday's verdict in a Lapeer County courtroom. Police found 86-year old Marie Warren beaten to death on October 1, 2006, in Deerfield Township. Her fingers and thumbs had been cut off. Choate was charged in 2011 with home invasion and other charges, and the murder charge was added later. Authorities say the break in the case happened when DNA from the crime scene was matched with a sample from Choate in the Michigan Department of Corrections criminal DNA registry.