The penalty phase for convicted murderer Markeith Loyd, 44, is being held in a courtroom in Orange County, Florida. You can watch it in the player above.
The defendant was convicted last Wednesday on all charges in the murder of his ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon, 24. She was three months pregnant, prosecutors said at trial. The defendant also tried to kill her brother, authorities said. The state argued that Loyd had plenty of opportunities to back out of the fatal argument on December 13, 2016, but he didn’t. He was “determined” to end her life, Assistant State Attorney Ric Ridgway said in opening statements.
As far as Loyd was concerned, he was the victim in all this.
#MarkeithLoyd – Prosecutor Ridgway ends the cross-examination with this:
Ridgway: None of this is your fault?
Ridgway: In fact, you’re really the victim here today, aren’t you?
Loyd: Of course I am
Ridgway: No further questions pic.twitter.com/0MCYoERqOo
— Law & Crime Network (@LawCrimeNetwork) October 15, 2019
Loyd testified in his defense, detailing at length his relationship problems with Dixon, and his preferences for how a girlfriend of his should act. After jurors went out to deliberate, the defendant voiced criticism over how his attorney handled the trial.
As in any penalty phase for a capital case, a victory for the defense means getting a life sentence, but even if Loyd gets that result, he still has to face another trial next year. He is scheduled to face a jury starting in May 2020 over the alleged murder of Orlando police Lt. Debra Clayton. Prosecutors said he fatally shot her while on the run after killing Dixon.
Loyd lost his left eye when police attack when arresting him. He said in a preliminary hearing that he had been surrendering and this violence was unnecessary. A state prosecutor determined that cops’ use of force was “justified.”
[mugshot via Orange County]