Court Cases

Brener Makes 5th. Effort To Remove Death Penalty by NewsPress

SUSPECT’S MOTION TO AVOID DEATH PENALTY DENIED

The second of double-murder suspect Kemar Johnston’s efforts to avoid the death penalty was denied by a judge today.

Lee Circuit Judge Thomas Reese denied a motion filed by Johnston’s attorney to preclude death based on a 14-state university study of how jurors decide whether a person will die for a crime, if convicted. It was the fifth effort by Johnston’s attorney, David Brener, to preclude the death penalty.

Reese also denied a motion to make the state provide all evidence material in the case and determine whether they are complying with the rules. Reese also denied that motion, saying the state has provided all evidence to defense attorneys and if there are further issues, attorneys can gather for a hearing.

A third motion Monday, to seal a statement by co-defendant Cody Roux, who pleaded guilty to several charges in exchange for his testimony, was continued so an attorney could argue on behalf of the news media.

Johnston is charged in the slayings of Jeffrey and Alexis Sosa, who were beaten, tortured, shot and killed Oct. 6, 2006 in Cape Coral.