A retired deputy in Palm Beach has been sentenced to 13 years in prison at the end of his second trial by a Florida judge on charges that he killed his daughter’s estranged husband.
Prosecutors say the 64-year-old man’s daughter and grandchildren were living with him in 2018 when the incident occurred. They say the estranged husband arrived at the home to drop off clothing for his children there when an argument began outside.
The defendant allegedly heard the commotion and stepped outside his home with a firearm in hand. With the husband’s violent history in mind, the defendant allegedly fired off a warning shot to break up the argument.
The defendant’s daughter returned to the home as the husband left in his vehicle. However, the defendant says he stopped the car and got out, which placed him in fear of his safety. The defendant then allegedly fired another shot at the victim, which struck him in the head, killing him.
Although the defendant claimed self defense, prosecutors say the cause was more likely unresolved issues between the two, including an instance in which the victim had stolen from him in the past.
The defendant was charged with first-degree murder and tried on the charges in court. The first trial ended in a mistrial after one of the jurors was discovered to be using his cellphone during closing arguments. The jury in the second trial found him guilty of manslaughter earlier this year.
The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.