A grand jury has approved five counts of first-degree murder against the 21-year-old man accused of killing five women at a SunTrust bank location in Sebring. A state attorney for the 10th Judicial Circuit said that the severity of the crime justifies asking for the death penalty if convictions result from the criminal charges.
The suspected gunman reportedly wore a T-shirt featuring the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse when he allegedly opened fire on people in the bank. Authorities consider him the killer of four female bank employees and a female customer. After the shootings, he engaged in a standoff with a SWAT team for two hours until law enforcement entered the building and took him into custody.
Investigators have not determined why he did what he is alleged to have done. They have discovered that he left a trainee position at the Avon Park Correctional Institution two weeks before the incident at the bank. A representative from the Florida Department of Corrections said that no disciplinary actions had been recorded against him before he quit the training.
A person accused of committing acts of violence could face a long prison sentence if convicted. The representation of Orlando, Florida, violent crimes defense lawyers could counter the efforts of aggressive prosecutors who want to look tough on crime. A lawyer could examine the evidence to see how strongly it supports the charges. Any areas of weakness might give a lawyer leverage during a trial to cast doubt among the jurors.
Source: NBC News, “Suspect in SunTrust bank shooting in Florida faces death penalty“, Doha Madini, Feb. 11, 2019