New Death Sentence: Man Sentenced to Death in South Beach Rape and Murder: An Orlando man must die for the execution-style shooting of a teen who was kidnapped from South Beach and brutally gang-raped, a judge ruled. Joel Lebron, 34, is now headed to Death Row for the killing of Ana Maria Angel, a case that shocked South Florida. Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge William Thomas was emotional, nearly crying as he sentenced Lebron. As the teary judge left the court, he said: “To Mr. Lebron, God bless you. To the family, God Bless you.”
In Hillsborough Court, Murder Suspect Khalid Pasha Gets Wish to Defend Himself: 11 years ago, Khalid Pasha was sentenced to death for the murders of 43-year-old Robin Canady and her 20-year-old daughter, Ranesha Singleton. He had asked shortly before the trial to represent himself, and the judge denied his request. In 2010, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that he should have had the chance to defend himself. Now he is. “The stakes are so high in cases like this that lawyers must have years of experience and special training to become officially qualified to defend the accused. But the 69-year-old defendant trusted no one but himself.”
Possible New Death Sentence: Jury Recommends Death for Former MacDill Sergeant: Jurors have recommended that former MacDill Air Force Base sergeant Ralph Wright be executed for murdering his former lover and their 15-month-old son. The same jury convicted Wright, 44, of two counts of first-degree murder in the 2007 deaths of Paula O’Conner and their 15-month-old son, Alijah. That vote was unanimous, as required by law. Jurors split 7-5 in recommending the death penalty for Wright instead of life in prison, the only other sentence available.