Jury Recommends Death Penalty for Quincy Man: A Gadsden County jury recommended the death penalty for a Quincy man found guilty in the fatal stabbing of a man on Christmas Eve 2010. Marvin Cannon was convicted of all five counts — first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, armed robbery, attempted armed robbery and arson — in the attack that left one man dead and another injured.
Man Sentenced to Death for Killing Local Grandmother: Timothy Fletcher, 28, choked back tears as Judge Wendy Berger described his crimes in great detail. Then, she read his sentence. “The court adjudicates you guilty of the offense and sentences you, Timothy Wayne Fletcher, to death,” she said. Fletcher was facing charges in the April 2009 murder of his grandmother and crimes related to his jail escape.
Jurors Recommend Death Sentence in Murder of NSU Professor: Convicted of first-degree murder, Randy W. Tundidor still maintains he’s innocent — even though he wouldn’t put up a fight to save himself from Florida’s Death Row. A Broward county jury unanimously recommended that Tundidor receive a death sentence for the May stabbing of Joseph Morrissey, his landlord, and then setting Morrissey’s Plantation home on fire while the victim’s wife and son were in a nearby bedroom.
Broward Circuit Judge Cynthia Imperato will have the final say on Tundidor’s punishment. Rarely do judges stray from a jury’s recommendation. Her decision likely won’t come until early next year.
Editorial: Miriam Elliott: Time to Abolish the Death Penalty: “141 people have been exonerated from U.S. death rows since 1973; 27 in Florida; others may have been executed despite serious doubt about their guilt. There is no convincing evidence that the death penalty has a special deterrent effect and capital prosecutions come with huge financial costs, far higher than ordinary criminal justice cases. The cost of the death penalty diverts resources from more constructive solutions, such as support for law enforcement and crime prevention and services for murder victims’ families. We can have justice without the death penalty.”
Possible New Death Sentence: Man Guilty in Fatal Drug Robbery: A Santa Rosa County jury found 43-year-old Robert Hobart guilty of two counts of first-degree murder. The Pensacola News-Journal reports that jurors will reconvene next week to recommend life in prison or the death penalty. Authorities say Hobart shot 41 year old Robert Hamm and 43 year old Tracie Tolbert in the head and left their bodies by the side of a rural road. Prosecutors say Hobart killed the couple to steal their Roxicodone, which is a prescription painkiller.
Florida Supreme Court Vacates Killer’s Death Sentence: The Florida Supreme Court has vacated the death sentence of a man convicted of killing a woman in Lake County. The justices unanimously upheld Eric Simmons’ first-degree murder conviction on Thursday for the 2001 slaying but ordered a new sentencing hearing by a 5-2 vote.
The majority ruled Simmons’ lawyers failed to fully investigate and present mitigating evidence. That includes his low intelligence, a brain injury suffered as a child and substance abuse.