Dustin Briggs – white, age 27

Sentenced to death in Bradford County, Pennsylvania
By: A jury
Date of crime: March 2004
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Briggs shot and killed Sheriff’s deputies Michael VanKuren and Christopher Burget when they tried to serve bench warrants on Briggs at his father’s home. Burget was shot with his own gun. Brigg’s sister testified to the abuse he received as a child at the hands of his father.
Prosecutor(s): Patrick J. Blessington Defense lawyer(s): George Lepley
Sources: US State News 2/9/06; Philadelphia Inquirer 2/9/06; Times Leader 2/10/06; Centre Daily Times 2/10/06; Associated Press 2/10/06, 3/16/06

Billy Brooks – black, age 32 (re-sentence after appellate reversal)

Sentenced to death in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania
By: A jury
Date of crime: 1990
Prosecution’s case/defense response:  Brooks was originally convicted and given the death penalty for the murder of fellow inmate Eric Vaughn. Brooks had escaped from a jail in North Carolina where he was serving a life sentence when he was captured and incarcerated in Pennsylvania. He was granted a new trial by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court due to evidence showing that the attorney only had a 20 minute phone conversation with Brooks before the trial.
Prosecutor(s): unknown Defense lawyer(s):  George H. Newman
Sources: Philadelphia Inquirer 1/1/04

Robert Flor — white, age 38

Sentenced to death in Bucks County, Pennsylvania
By: A jury
Date of crime: Sept. 25, 2005
Prosecution’s case/defense response: More than 30 people witnessed Flor kill a police officer in a hospital emergency room.  A second officer and hospital staff member was also wounded in the attack.  Flor had been arrested for drunk driving and punching his girlfriend.  While at the hospital for a blood test, Flor was able to grab the officer’s gun and started firing.  Flor pleaded guilty to killing the officer, but asked the jury to decide his fate.  Defense counsel claimed Flor refused to participate in his defense.  Three experts did testify to Flor’s mental health.  The jury only took 70 minutes to decide on death sentence.
Prosecutor(s): Diane E. Gibbons Defense lawyer(s): Bradley Bastedo, Peter C. Hall
Sources: Philadelphia Inquirer 11/19/06 (2006 WLNR 20072648); Intelligencer 11/21/06 (2006 WLNR 20605587), 12/5/06 (2006 WLNR 21403142), 7/6/07 (2007 WLNR 13175066)

Darien Houser – black, age 40

Sentenced to death in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania
By: A jury
Date of crime: March 2004
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Warrant Officer Joseph LeClaire, Jr. was killed during a shootout in Houser’s apartment. Two other officers survived their gunshot wounds. Houser fired 19 shots, having to stop at least once to reload.  Houser claimed that the men didn’t identify themselves when they entered his apartment and fired in self-defense. Defense attorney also claimed that the murder weapon, which was not discovered until months later, was planted to bolster the case. Houser’s girlfriend, who was present at the crime, testified that the men were wearing badges when the entered. The first trial ended when the jury deadlocked. At second trial, jury only deliberated for 30 minutes.
Prosecutor(s): Edward Cameron Defense lawyer(s): Daniel Conner
Sources: Philadelphia Inquirer 9/17/05, 9/21/05, 9/28/05, 12/1/05; Philadelphia Daily News 9/21/05

Miguel Padilla– Latino, age 25

Sentenced to death in Blair County, Pennsylvania
By: A judge, after a recommendation of death by a jury
Date of crime: August 28, 2005
Prosecution’s case/defense response:  Padilla, a Mexican citizen, was convicted of killing three people outside of a social club after his friend was not allowed in.  Defense presented testimony of childhood abuse at the hands of Padilla’s father during the penalty phase.  A mental health expert also testified that Padilla suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder because of sexual abuse, and the shootings were a result of alcohol and drug abuse.
Prosecutor(s): Rich Consiglio Defense lawyer(s): Don Speice, Ed Blanarik
Sources: Intelligencer 9/15/06; Associated Press 11/30/06, 3/15/07; Pittsburgh Tribune Review 3/16/07

Andre Staton – black, age 36

Sentenced to death in Blair County, Pennsylvania
By: A jury
Date of Crime:  2/25/04
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Staton’s ex-girlfriend Beverly Yohn had a protective order against him and was staying at her mother’s.  Staton went to the mother’s house and stabbed Yohn to death in front of her two children.  He was on parole from a conviction for a prior stabbing.  Staton claimed that he was high at the time, and that he had acted in self-defense.
Prosecutor(s):  Richard Consiglio Defense Lawyer(s):
Sources:  Centre Daily Times 6/2/06 (2006 WLNR 9471184).