Penalty phase for man convicted of killing 2 Kissimmee officers starts Tuesday

Miller was convicted of killing Officer Baxter and Sgt. Howard

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The penalty phase is set to begin Tuesday for a man convicted of killing two Kissimmee police officers back in August 2017.

At a hearing Monday, Everett Miller sat quietly in court as lawyers asked questions and a judge ruled on what can and can't be discussed during the penalty phase. 

A jury will soon have to recommend if Miller should get life in prison or the death penalty, he was convicted in September in the fatal shooting of Officer Matthew Baxter and Sgt. Sam Howard.

Monday, the judge ruled to allow victim impact statements during the penalty phase, though parts of it must be altered and or redacted. 

The court also ruled that lawyers can mention the fact that Miller is a Marine veteran and jurors will hear from witnesses on if Miller showed signs of post-traumatic stress disorder prior to the fatal shootings.  

A judge said he needs more time to decide if jurors will get to see pictures shown Monday in court of the officers and their families to go along with victim impact statements. 

During the trial, prosecutors say Miller planned the murders because he was anti-law enforcement, But the defense maintained it happened so fast, there was no time for premeditation. 

The penalty phase is expected to last a least a week. 

News 6 will be there and keep you posted. 

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