Sentencing trial postponed in SoBe murder
MIAMI (WSVN) -- The sentencing trial of the man accused of a horrific crime 10 years ago has been postponed until Friday.
Joel Lebron was found guilty of murder, rape, kidnapping and attempted murder last week, but the jury has to decide if he should face life in prison or the death penalty.
A judge postponed the closing arguments for Friday after a juror had a family emergency.
According to prosecutors, Lebron was the triggerman in one of South Florida's most horrific crimes in 2002.
Ana Maria Angel, 18, and her boyfriend, Nelson Portobanco, were on a date on South Beach and they were kidnapped at gunpoint by five men.
Portobanco was stabbed and left for dead but survived. Angel was raped and then shot in the head. Prosecutors said Lebron pulled the trigger.
Lebron's attorneys told jurors that he has had a troubled childhood. A social worker took the stand and explained his behavior. "Most of the younger kids engage in some sort of deviant behavior, and the mother although she tried hard, and was very dedicated to her children, there was a time when they reached an age that she lost control of the children," said Jose Lopez.
Attorneys said Lebron was hit by a car as a child and showed charts of a brain scan with possible brain damage.
The doctor who examined Lebron after his arrest said he spoke about current events but also corrected him in a sporting fact. "I had mentioned to him that Uruguay had won the championship 14 times before, and he rapidly corrected me," Neurologist Dr. Ray Lopez said. "He stated that they had actually won 15 times before."
Tomorrow, the jury will present Lebron's fate to the judge. The judge will then decide if he should get life in prison or the death penalty.
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