February 19, 2009
Posted: 09:55 AM ET
BARTOW, Florida–For the first time on Wednesday, jurors in the Bartow, Florida murder trial of Joseph Bearden – charged with the stabbing death of Ryan Skipper – heard testimony suggesting why some believe the killing was actually a hate crime. According to a key prosecution witness, the defendant admitted that he felt no remorse about killing Skipper – an openly gay man – because he had done the world a favor by getting rid of a homosexual.
Robert Aguero – whose sister, Maria, had testified earlier – told jurors of Bearden’s demeanor a few hours after the murder. “He didn’t feel good about it, because he knew it was wrong, but he didn’t feel bad about it, either . . . it seemed pretty all right in their eyes to do what they did.” Bearden and co-defendant William Brown, Jr. – who will be tried separately later this year – both face the possibility of execution should they be convicted. Bearden has pleaded not guilty.
In Session brings you gavel-to-gavel coverage of this case.
–In Session staff
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