The Florida Supreme Court heard argument on Tuesday on an appeal from Mark Sievers, sentenced in December 2019 of the first degree murder of his wife, Teresa.
A Lee County jury recommended the death penalty for Sievers, and Judge Bruce E. Kyle sentenced him to death in January 2020.
Sievers lawyers have filed an appeal with the Florida Supreme Court in February 2020.
At Monday’s hearing in Tallahassee, Sievers attorney Kary Kinney and State Attorney Christina Pacheco, Assistant Attorney General of Florida, had time to provide evidence as to why the decision should be canceled or suspended.
Kinney argued that the state had missed a deadline to add aggravating factors to their murder case, which would in effect remove the aspect of the death penalty.
Death corridor:Mark Sievers transferred to death row
She also referred to instructions from Kyle regarding a polygraph that was not given to Curtis Wayne Wright, the third murder suspect, who pleaded guilty to second degree murder in 2016 in return for a 25-year sentence of jail.
Additionally, Kinney said Wright’s relationship with prosecutors was damaging.
Kinney ended his commentary portion by saying that without Wright’s testimony, the state had no evidence that Mark Sievers was involved in Teresa Sievers’ murder and the mistakes that bolstered Wright’s credibility gave it more credibility. to its history.
“I ask that this case be set aside for a new trial,” Kinney said, “and she should come back for a new trial on the understanding that it should not be a death penalty case.”
Pacheco told the court that the main problem with the case “is that there is no problem.”
Pacheco said nothing was hidden and that there was nothing wrong with Kyle instructing the jury on the absence of a polygraph for Wright.
The judges questioned the two lawyers at length about the aggravating problems surrounding the aspect of the filing deadline.
The judges suspended shortly after 10:30 am No time limit was set for a decision.
An appeal is also heard before the Florida Second District Court of Appeals in Jimmy Rodgers Case. Rodgers initially faced a charge of first degree murder and the possibility of the death penalty as one of three men – Sievers and Wright being the others – charged with the murder of Teresa Sievers.
A Lee County jury found Rodgers guilty of the lesser charge of second degree murder, as well as trespassing, in October 2019. Rodgers was sentenced to life in prison in December 2019.
Wright admitted to the murder while testifying on behalf of the prosecution in the Rodgers and Sievers trials and said Sievers would pay him for the murder of the popular Bonita Springs physician.
During both trials, prosecutors claimed Sievers planned his wife’s murder with Wright’s help and was in part motivated by large life insurance policies on Teresa Sievers.