A U.S. District Court jury in Detroit is hearing final arguments Tuesday in a federal death penalty case.
Defense lawyers for Timothy O’Reilly, a convicted murderer in the killing of an armored truck guard at a Dearborn bank, will likely argue that O’Reilly’s behavior stemmed from manipulation and abuse as a child by his father.
WWJ and Fox 2 News Legal Analyst Charlie Langton says the prosecution wrapped up its case late Tuesday morning, telling the jury that Timothy O’Reilly plotted more killings from his jail cell.
“In recorded jailhouse conversations, the defendant bragged about the shooting, laughed about the shooting. And then, while the defendant was in jail, he tried to murder five other people, including witnesses that would have testified in this case,” Langton said.
“The government is going to show that there are simply more aggravating factors than mitigating factors. What does that mean? That there’s more bad stuff here. Like in this case, the defendant showed absolutely no remorse; that the defendant shot the victim not once, but twice while the victim was lying down, in the back.”
Langton said O’Reilly doesn’t seem to be getting any sympathy from jurors who will decide whether he will live or die.
“Looking at the jury, the jury is not making any eye contact with the defendant. And, I counted at least four jurors with some tears in their eyes, especially when the government talked about the impact on the victim’s family,” he said.
The death penalty isn’t available in Michigan courts but is an option for murders prosecuted in federal court.
This would be the first death penalty sentence in Michigan since the late 1930’s.
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