Rafael Andres – white, age 41

Sentenced to death in Miami-Dade County, Florida
By: judge after a jury recommendation of 9 to 3
Date of crime: 2005
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Andres beat, stabbed, and strangled 31-year-old airport waitress Yvette Fariñas. Andres was the handyman for Fariñas and her boyfriend’s home. After killing Fariñas, Andres used her ATM card to withdraw money and used it to purchase goods. He previously was convicted of a 1987 murder of Linda Azcarreta and he served 18 months due to good behavior and an over-crowded prison system.
Sources: Miami Herald 5/6/15, Tampa Tribune 5/7/15 (2015 WLNR 13269323)

Edward Covington – white, age 35

Sentenced to death in Hillsborough County, Florida
By: judge; forfeited right to jury recommendation
Date of crime: 5/11/08
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Covington brutally murdered his girlfriend, Lisa Freiberg, and her two young children, Zachary, 7, and Heather Savannah, 2. Covington stabbed Lisa many times with multiple instruments. He dismembered and decapitated the youngest child, Heather, and even attempted to scalp her after death. Covington also was convicted of animal cruelty for killing the family dog. Covington pleaded guilty and stated that he deserved the death sentence. Prior to the murders, Covington brutally killed the family’s three cats then called the police. He was treated for depression following this issue.
Sources: Tampa Tribune 5/30/15 (2015 WLNR 16021990), Orlando Sentinel 6/2/15 (2015 WLNR 16293557)

Barry Davis, Jr. – black, age 31

Sentenced to death in Bay County, Florida
By: judge; jury recommendation is unknown
Date of crime: 5/7/12
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Davis and Tiffani Steward, Davis’ former girlfriend, went to Hughes’ home for dinner and to collect a drug debt. Steward and Hughes’ girlfriend, Hiedi Rhodes, went to get margarita mix. When they returned, they found Hughes motionless and bleeding on the floor. Davis grabbed Rhodes by the throat until she become unconscious and then he submerged both Hughes and Rhodes in the bathtub. He later returned to collect the bodies, cut them up, and burn them in his home. Davis and his defense counsel sought to use Davis’ abnormal brain to keep him off death row. A PET Scan shows that Davis has an abnormal frontal lobe area which can impact judgment and impulse control.
Sources: The News Herald 5/19/15 (2015 WLNR 14867312), Northwest Florida Daily News 5/21/15 (2015 WLNR 15173650), AP State News 8/26/15

Randall Deviney – white, age 19 (re-sentence)

Sentenced to death in Duval County, Florida
By: judge with an unknown jury recommendation
Date of crime: 2008
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Deviney slit the throat of his 65-year-old neighbor, Delores Futrell in 2008. He was convicted once and sentenced to death. Deviney’s sentence was one of four that were overturned on appeal. However, the States Attorney’s office attempted to put him back on Death Row. The defense tried to argue that Deviney had a troubled childhood and presented evidence that his parents were convicted of murdering an infant son before Deviney was born. Then when he was 3-years-old, Deviney’s younger brother stabbed him. Evidence of how Deviney’s wife beat him, his failed marriage, and his mother sexually abusing him were also mitigating evidence presented by the defense. The prosecutor did point out that the Department of Children and Families never found any evidence of sexual abuse.
Sources: The Florida Times-Union 7/23/15 (2015 WLNR 21804381), The Florida Times-Union 8/14/15 (2015 WLNR 24139785)

Dennis Glover – black, age 48

Sentenced to death in Duval County, Florida
By: judge with a jury recommendation of 10 to 2
Date of crime: 5/2012
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Glover beat, strangled, and stabbed his neighbor Sandra Jean Allen to death. Glover claims that he say two black men fleeing from his neighbor’s home and entered to find Allen dead. Defense lawyers said that Glover and Allen were lovers, which explains why his DNA was on her without being responsible for the murder. Glover tried to argue that he was intellectually disabled, however, his IQ was higher than 70 and therefore was eligible for the death sentence.
Sources: The Florida Times-Union 5/29/15 (2015 WLNR 15986795), The Florida Times-Union 8/14/15 (2015 WLNR 24139785)

James Herard – black, age 18

Sentenced to death in Broward County, Florida
By: judge with a jury recommendation of 8 to 4
Date of crime: 11/14/08
Prosecution’s case/defense response: There were a series of Dunkin’ Donuts robberies by Herard and three other men, who were members of the Bacc Street Crips gang. Herard told Tharod Bell to shoot Eric Jean-Pierre, a passerby, as part of a “body count” competition. Herard told the judge that he wanted to have fun before he was convicted for the first-degree murder of Kiem Huynh, a customer at one of the Dunkin’ Donuts that the men robbed. He was sentenced to life in prison for this murder and was convicted for multiple counts of attempted murder and armed robbery. Herard’s lawyer argued that Herard should not get the death sentence when the one to actually pull the trigger was not given a death sentence.
Sources: Sun Sentinel 9/23/14 (2014 WLNR 26556091), Sun Sentinel 1/24/15 (2015 WLNR 2341650)

Dontae Morris – black, age 25

Sentenced to death in Hillsborough County, Florida
By: judge with a jury recommendation of 10 to 2
Date of crime: 5/18/10
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Morris killed two Tampa police officers on June 29, 2010. Morris was convicted and sentenced to death by a judge with a 10 to 2 jury recommendation that took less than an hour to deliberate. Forty-two days after killing the two officers, Morris shot and killed Derek Anderson. Anderson was carrying laundry to his mother’s apartment when Morris shot him once in the back. The defense lawyer urged jurors that the answer is not to solve this issue with causing more death and violence.
Sources: Tampa Tribune 7/31/15 (2015 WLNR 22609984), Tampa Bay Times 12/5/15 (2015 WLNR 37521091)

Bessman Okafor – black, age 25

Sentenced to death in Orange County, Florida
By: judge with jury recommendation of 11 to 1
Date of crime: 2012
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Okafor killed 19-year-old Alex Zaldivar, who was supposed to testify against Okafor in a different case. Okafor robbed a home to try to find drugs and was arrested. After being released on bond, he went with accomplices and shot Zaldivar and his two roommates. The two roommates survived.
Sources: http://www.wftv.com/news/local/bessman-okafor-sentenced-death-ocoee-home-invasion/26833870, Orlando Sentinel 11/18/15 (2015 WLNR 34258656)

Dwayne White – black, age 40

Sentenced to death in Seminole County, Florida
By: judge with a jury recommendation of 8 to 4
Date of crime: 8/29/11
Prosecution’s case/defense response: White killed his estranged wife, Sarah Rucker, who was found outside a Miami Subs store facedown with her throat slashed. A few hours before Rucker’s death, Rucker made calls to 911 and the recordings were played for the jurors that consisted of Rucker screaming at White and telling the dispatcher that he was beating her. White claims that he was not responsible for the death of his wife, but there was evidence to prove he was at the scene. A weapon was never discovered, but it is believed that it was a pocketknife.
Source: Orlando Sentinel 3/20/15 (2015 WLNR 8319323)

Zachary Wood – white, age 23

Sentenced to death in Washington County, Florida
By: judge; jury recommendation is unknown
Date of crime: 4/20/14
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Police found James “Coon” Shores, 66 years old, shot to death on his property. Trial testimony stated that Shores went home and found Wood and his friend (and co-defendant), Dillon Scott Rafsky, at his home. The two men burglarized the home, and then beat, bound, and shot Shores. Wood claims that he did not kill Shores and that the death sentence was given in order for the judge to “further his political career.” Wood’s family and friends took the stand to tell about Wood’s difficult childhood. Wood’s mother died from colon cancer when he was 8 years old and he later was the victim of abuse. Wood’s lawyer stated that Wood may have assisted Rafsky, but claims that Wood did not shot Shores.
Sources: Holmes County Times Advertiser 2/27/15 (2015 WLNR 37185164), Holmes County Times Advertiser 5/12/15 (2015 WLNR 37674724)