The Latest: Defense: Death penalty is vengeance, not justice

2 years 11 months 3 weeks ago Friday, October 11 2019 Oct 11, 2019 October 11, 2019 11:11 AM October 11, 2019 in News - AP Texas Headlines

HOUSTON (AP) - The Latest on the sentencing of Ronald Haskell who was convicted of capital murder in a Houston-area attack that left six people dead (all times local):

11:05 a.m.

An attorney for a man convicted in an attack in which he fatally shot six members of his ex-wife's family in Texas says sentencing him to death would amount to vengeance, not justice.

Attorney Neal Davis III asked jurors during closing arguments Friday to spare the life of 39-year-old Ronald Lee Haskell, arguing they should sentence him to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Haskell was convicted of capital murder last month in the 2014 attack that left six members of the Stay family dead in their Houston-area home. Davis says Haskell deserves to "die in prison" and spend the rest of his life thinking about what he has done.

Doug Durham, another defense attorney, said anger, hatred, fear and vengeance are at the heart of prosecutors' arguments for a death sentence.

10:30 a.m.

A prosecutor is asking jurors to sentence to death a man who fatally shot six members of his ex-wife's family in Texas.

Prosecutor Samantha Knecht said Friday during closing arguments in the punishment phase of Ronald Lee Haskell's capital murder trial that "this is the moment for justice" for Haskell's victims.

As she talked to jurors, Knecht placed bullet casings for each of the six victims in front of the jury and more than 20 bullets for other family members that Knecht said Haskell also wanted to kill.

The same jury last month convicted Haskell of capital murder for the deaths of a couple at their suburban Houston home. Also killed in the 2014 attack were four of their children. A fifth child was shot but survived by playing dead.

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