Florida appeals court: New death penalty law applies to XBox murders retrial
As courts across Florida have scrambled this year to figure out how to apply a new death-penalty law, the resentencing of two men convicted in a notorious Volusia County case known as the “Xbox murders” added to the questions.
‘I am prepared for execution:’ Here’s how Brevard death row inmate waived his appeals
Scheduled to die in Florida's execution chamber, Brevard County convicted double-murderer James Barnes asked to fire his attorneys and dismiss all legal proceedings last month in order to “proceed straight to execution,” a court transcript shows.
Florida Supreme Court refuses to block execution of man convicted of killing Flagler couple in 1989
The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday rejected arguments aimed at sparing the life of death row inmate Louis Gaskin, setting the stage for his execution next week in the 1989 murders of a Flagler County couple.
Transgender Missouri inmate executed for fatal stabbing
A Missouri inmate has been put to death for a 2003 killing, becoming what is believed to be the first transgender woman executed in the U.S. Amber McLaughlin was put to death Tuesday night, hours after Republican Gov. Mike Parson declined a clemency request.
State seeks death penalty against West Melbourne couple charged in 3-year-old’s death
The state attorney's office for Brevard and Seminole Counties filed a motion of intent to seek the death penalty against a mother and her boyfriend after investigators accused the pair with a 3-year-old boy's death.
Prosecutors will not seek death penalty against dad accused of killing family at home in Celebration
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orange-Osceola State Attorney Aramis Ayala will not seek the death penalty against Anthony Todt, who stands accused of killing his wife and three children at a home in Celebration last year. Ayala, who has made headlines in the past due to her stance on the death penalty, filed a notice of intent to not seek the death penalty in the case of Todt and several other high-profile cases. News 6 has reached out to Ayala, who did not seek re-election, for comment but has not heard back. He made similar claims in the two phone calls to his sister in March and April, suggesting that Megan Todt had tried to kill the children before. Todt told his sister in a phone call from jail that he couldn’t have stopped his family from being slain — because he wasn’t around.
Florida seeks death penalty for man accused of using hammer, knife to kill boys
MELROSE, Fla. – Prosecutors have decided to seek the death penalty in the case of a 30-year-old Florida man accused of killing two teenage brothers in their home over the summer. Officials filed a request notifying the court that they plan to pursue the death penalty against Mark Wilson Jr. after a grand jury indicted him Oct. 20 on two counts of first-degree murder, the Gainesville Sun reported. Wilson is accused of using a hammer and knife to kill 14-year-old Tayten Baker and 12-year-old Robert Baker in their home in August. State Attorney R.J. Larizza said his office consulted with the boys’ family prior to making the decision to seek death for Wilson, the newspaper reported. Wilson was the boyfriend of the boy’s aunt, and the family had allowed them to live in a shed in their backyard, officials said.
Florida Supreme Court to hear arguments in Bessman Okafor case
ORLANDO, Fla. The state Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments Tuesday surrounding the case against convicted killer Bessman Okafor. The state of Florida is seeking to have the death penalty reinstated against Okafor, who was sentenced to death row in 2015 for the murder of Alex Zaldivar. Okafors case was sent back for re-sentencing after a change in the law required a unanimous jury decision. However, the state Supreme Court reversed its own ruling and said an unanimous decision was not necessary for someone to be sentenced to death. Prosecutors asked a lower court earlier this year to reinstate Okafors death sentence but was denied.