Pointing to “evolving standards of decency,” attorneys for a Death Row inmate have asked the Florida Supreme Court to reconsider a major ruling that said unanimous jury recommendations are not necessary before death sentences can be imposed.
Death row inmate Cornelius Baker’s fate is undetermined as the judge, the defense and the prosecution are all awaiting direction from other courts as to whether to re-try Baker in a sentencing phase or stick to his original death sentence.
The prosecution is arguing that a Supreme Court decision last week may make the re-sentencing of convicted murderer Cornelius Baker, scheduled to start in four weeks in Bunnell, if unnecessary.
The Florida Supreme Court said unanimous jury recommendations are not necessary before death sentences can be imposed, backing away from a 2016 decision. The ruling puts in question the case of Bunnell’s Cornelius Baker, scheduled for a re-sentencing in February.
Clifford Williams, now 77, gives God the credit for his release from prison, after state prosecutors found he and his nephew, Hubert Nathan Myers, were wrongly convicted in the 1976 Jacksonville murder of a woman and the attempted murder of her girlfriend.
Though David Snelgrove was finally sentenced to life in prison rather than death this week, his trial shows how the 20-year ordeal in court could have been avoided with the same result two decades ago, had capital punishment not been on the table.
Lawyers and the judge in the re-sentencing case of convicted murderer Cornelius Baker focused on a lengthy questionnaire about the death penalty the defense planned to submit to potential jurors. The judge ordered the questionnaire significantly shortened.
The seven-day re-trial over the penalty for the 2000 murders in Palm Coast’s B-Section was necessary because two previous verdicts were ruled unconstitutional. Today’s verdict means that years, maybe decades, of further proceedings will not be necessary.
David Snelgrove’s double-murder of Glyn and Vivian Fowler in Palm Coast 20 years ago comes down, in this third sentencing trial in two decades, to a jury willing to believe he was a calculated killer as opposed to a crack-addicted mentally impaired man who snapped.
A jury tasked with deciding whether to recommend death for David Snelgrove saw a psychologist for the defense unable to convincingly show that Snelgrove is a simple-minded individual who could not weigh the severity of the double-murder of an elderly couple he committed in Palm Coast 20 years ago.