Reginald Luster Receives 20 Year Sentence

By: Julie Montanaro, Mike Springer Email
By: Julie Montanaro, Mike Springer Email
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Update
October 1, 2014

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Reginald Luster was sentenced Wednesday after being found guilty in July of attempted second degree murder.

Luster was accused of stabbing his girlfriend in her dorm room on the campus of FSU in March of 2012.

Luster was sentenced to 20 years in prison. His sentence included 709 days for time already served. His sentence also includes 8 years of probation upon his release.


Update
October 1, 2014

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- In a tearful statement Gabriella Stroud says she lives her life fearing Reginald Luster will find her and try to kill her.

In July the former FSU student was found guilty of attempted second degree murder of his girlfriend, Stroud, in her dorm room in March 2012.

With her family in attendance Stroud asked Judge Terry Lewis to not dismiss Luster from prison.

Luster's father, Reginald Lester Sr., also approached the stand saying his son was a honor roll student and set to graduate college a year early. He said his son had plans to attend law school and become a criminal defense lawyer.

"Life for me has stopped," Reginald Luster Jr. said. "I've sat in a cold hard cell for 2 years and had time to reflect."

Luster also asked the judge for his "empathy, disparity and an opportunity."

The defense is currently wrapping up its closing arguments.


Update
July 18, 2014 - 10:45 p.m.

A jury deliberated for three hours tonight before finding FSU student Reginald Luster guilty of a lesser charge of attempted second degree murder.

He was accused of stabbing his girlfriend in her dorm room In March of 2012 after the two argued over text messages from a friend.

Luster will be sentenced September 3rd.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
July 18, 2014

A jury just started deliberating in a bloody dorm room stabbing. Reginald Luster is on trial again, accused of attacking his girlfriend in FSU's Ragans Hall.

The jury in his first trial could not agree on a verdit, the question now, can this one?

"He had a bandage on his chest," testified Reginald Luster Senior, Luster's father.

Luster Senior described the night he rushed to the emergency room in March 2012 to find his son Reginald Luster with his hands and chest heavily bandaged.

Luster senior told the jury, "I pulled the bandage back and I saw knife stabs through his chest."

Yet prosecutors contend the row of stab wounds on Reginald Luster's chest were self inflicted after the FSU student attacked his girlfriend in her dorm room and stabbed her 12 times.

Luster is facing attempted murder charges for it.

Victim of the crime, Gabrielle Stroud testified, "He said 'I want you to die.' And then when I got to the bookshelf he said 'if I can't have you then no one else can - we're going to die together.'"

Reginald Luster's father says he went to the FSU Police Department the day after the confrontation and told them his son would give a statement about what went on inside that dorm room at Ragans Hall, but he says that never happened.

The judge said, "Did that interview ever take place?"

Luster Senior responded, "No, four days later they arrested my son."

In his first trial, Reginald Luster took the stand himself and told the jury what happened. He claims Stroud attacked him and his hands were badly injured when he tried to wrestle the knife away.

In this re-trial, Luster decided against testifying at all.

The judge said, "You've decided that you do not wish to be a witness?"

Luster Junior responded, "Yes, sir."


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
July 18, 2014

Reginald Luster, an FSU student accused of stabbing his girlfriend in her dorm room, told the judge he has decided not to testify in his attempted murder trial.

Luster's father did testify. He said the day after the stabbing he went to the FSU Police Department and told the chief his son would make a statement, but he said that never happened.

He said officers came to the hospital on March 19 and arrested his son.

The defense has rested its case and the state is calling rebuttal witnesses.

UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
July 15, 2014

A former FSU student is now on trial again. He's accused of stabbing his girlfriend a dozen times inside her dorm room, but Reginald Luster claims his girlfriend is the one who tried to kill him.

"At first I thought he was punching me," Gabriella Stroud testified.

Gabriella Stroud says boyfriend Reginald Luster attacked her in her dorm room in March 2012 after discovering the phone number of her high school prom date in her phone.

They argued, she testified, and then Luster sneaked up behind her with a knife and stabbed her in the back and head. She said she fell to the floor, Luster got on top of her and continued to stab her.

"He kept saying I want you to die, I want you to die," Stroud testified.

Stroud testified that Luster was "extremely jealous" and had even sent a bogus Facebook message from her account telling her high school friend ... I don't want to see you. I have a good thing going with my boyfriend.

Stroud testified she was ultimately stabbed 12 times that day at Ragans Hall. The knife broke in half during the attack.

She says her roommate heard her screaming and ran to get help and that's when Luster turned the blade on himself.

"He said if I can't have you no one else can. We're going to die together," Stroud testified.

"He was fighting for his life," defense attorney Mutaqee Akbar told the jury.

Defense attorneys contend Stroud was the aggressor ... and was angry at Luster for rebuffing the suggestion she might be pregnant.

''He had seven stab wounds across his chest and once he realized what was going on, he tried to grab the knife," Akbar said.

This is the second time Luster has been tried for the stabbing.

A judge declared a mistrial in the first trial in January. The jury was deadlocked after nine hours of deliberation and could not reach a verdict.

We'll let you know what happens this time.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
July 14, 2014 7:15pm

A former FSU student accused of stabbing his girlfriend in her dorm room will go on trial again this week.

Reginald Luster was tried for attempted murder in January, but the jury was deadlocked and the judge declared a mistrial.

A new jury will hear the evidence starting tomorrow.

Luster is accused of stabbing his girlfriend in Ragans Hall in March, 2012.

She testified he stabbed her 12 times and then turned the knife on himself.

Luster contends he was defending himself.

We'll keep you posted on a verdict.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
January 30, 2014, 9:30pm

There is a hung jury in the attempted murder trial of an FSU student accused of stabbing his girlfriend.

A jury deliberated for more than nine hours before telling the judge it could not reach a decision.

The judge declared a mistrial. No word yet on when the state will retry the case.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
January 30, 2014, 11:40am

A jury is now deliberating in the attempted murder trial of an FSU student accused of stabbing his girlfriend in her dorm room.

Reginald Luster is accused of attempted murder for a March 2012 confrontation in Ragans Hall.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
January 29, 2014

Reginald Luster took the stand to testify in his own defense this afternoon.

Both sides have rested their cases. Attorneys are expected to make their closing arguments in the morning and then the jury will begin its deliberations.

We'll keep you posted on a verdict.


UPDATE By Julie Montanaro
January 28, 2014 7:10pm

An FSU student is now on trial - accused of trying to kill his girlfriend in her dorm room.

Ours were the only cameras rolling when the young woman took the stand and described the moment the stabbing began.

"Hurt, scared, like I was going to die... "

Gabriella Stroude broke down in tears as she described what happened that day in March 2012.

She testified - that she and her on again, off again boyfriend Reginald Luster - argued over phone calls to an ex-boyfriend.

Stroud says Luster asked her to sit down and read a note on his phone.

"I felt like someone was punching me. I fell off the chair and he got on top of me and I saw he had a knife in his hand. He stabs me, he keeps stabbing me and telling me I want you to die. I want you to die," she testified.

Stroude was the first witness on the stand Tuesday as Luster stands trial for attempted murder.

He's accused of attacking her in her dorm room in Ragans Hall before turning the knife on himself.

"This is a she said, he said case," defense attorney Stacy Sharp told the jury.

Luster's hand is still in a sling as a result of his injuries that day. His attorney contends the wounds are defensive wounds and intends to call a doctor to prove it.

"He is the best person, both as an expert in his field and as the man who physically repaired the damage that that knife did to Reginald Luster's hands when he was defending himself," Sharp said.

In a big blow to the defense, the judge allowed jurors to hear about two prior confrontations in January and February. Prosecutors say both were reported to police.

Testimony is expected to continue through Thursday.


By: Julie Montanaro
January 28, 2014, 12pm

An honors student at FSU is now on trial for attempted murder. Reginald Luster is accused of trying to kill his girlfriend in her dorm room in March 2012.

Gabriella Stroude testified that Luster was asking questions about a series of text messages between her and her ex-boyfriend.

Stroude says initially Luster pushed her into a closet door which bloodied her nose. She says he apologized and then she told him to leave. He came back later, she testified, and asked her to read a note he had written to her on his phone.

Stroude then testified Luster started stabbing her from behind. She fell to the floor and he straddled her and continued to stab her with a kitchen knife. She testified he twice said "I want you to die."

Stroud broke down in tears as she described it. The judge sent the jury out and called a 15 minute recess.

Stroude says Luster then started stabbing himself and she tried to stop him. She testified Luster said "If I can't have you, no one else can."

Luster's attorney calls the case a "she said, he said" with no physical evidence to support her version of the story over his.

Defense attorney Stacy Sharp says the "bulk of the evidence was never collected, never tested," he told the jury. He says there will be no fingerprints introduced into evidence.

Sharp says he will call a doctor who repaired the injuries to Luster's hands. He contends the doctor will testify the injuries to Luster's hands were so severe that he would not have been able to hold the knife at all.

"The state would have you believe he snapped," Sharp told the jury. "You're going to hear the rest of the story, the other side."


Tallahassee, FL -- April 3, 2012 --

Reggie Luster is charged with attempted murder in the stabbing of his girlfriend Gabriella Stroude. Luster appeared in court on Tuesday afternoon. The defense asked that Luster be released without bond.

Luster appeared in court with visible bandages and casts on his hands. His mother, Elanor Platts, has been a registered nurse for more than 20 years. She testified Tuesday afternoon that her son has not received proper medical attention for his hands. Luster's attorney said his client had seven hours worth of surgery on his hands following the incident on March 15.

Luster's attorney also said the wounds on his client's hands are consistent with someone trying to wrestle a knife from someone in a struggle. The prosecution showed pictures of multiple stab wounds on Gabriella Stroude and also presented a photo of the knife that was used that day.

The prosecution claims Luster is homicidal and suicidal and is too dangerous to be out on bond. They say at one point during the stabbing incident that Luster yelled out, 'I want you to die.'

Reginald Luster Sr., Reggie's father, also testified on behalf of his son. He says if his son is released on bond, Reggie would live with him in his Jacksonville home. Reginald Luster is an attorney in the Jacksonville area.

If Luster ever is released on bond the defense say they would be fine with having an active GPS placed on their client.

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Tallahassee, FL -- March 27, 2012

A hearing is set for next month in the case of an FSU student accused of stabbing a fellow student.

Reggie Luster's attorney filed the motion with the court to set bond for his client. The motion will be heard on April 3 at 3 p.m. Luster is accused of stabbing Gabriella Stroude inside Stroude's dorm room earlier this month.

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Tallahassee, FL -- March 21, 2012

A 19-year-old junior at Florida State University, accused of stabbing a fellow student, made his first court appearance Tuesday (3-20-12).

Reggie Luster was ordered by a judge to stay at least 500 feet away from Gabriella Stroude. He is not allowed to have any contact with Stroude either.

Police say Luster stabbed Stroude inside of Stroude's dorm room last week because Luster was upset Stroude was still talking to an ex-boyfriend. Police say Luster then turned the weapon on himself. Both were taken to the hospital and treated.

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NOTE; Probable Cause has been attached

Tallahassee, FL -- March 19, 2012

Reginald Luster, 19 has been arrested and charged with attempted murder for last week's stabbing at Ragans Hall on FSU campus.

Authorities say Luster tried to kill his girl friend, Gabriella Stroude, since she had had contact with an ex-boyfriend. Officials say Luster attacked her with the knife and then turned the weapon on himself.

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[UPDATE] Tallahassee, FL -- March 18, 2012 --11:17am

The health of a Florida State University junior who was stabbed inside a dorm room Thursday (3-15-12) is improving.

A spokeswoman for Tallahassee Memorial Hospital says Reggie Luster has been upgraded from 'fair' to 'good' condition Sunday (3-18-12)

Luster and Gabriella Stroude were stabbed inside Stroude's fourth-floor dorm at Ragans Hall. Stroude has since been released from the hospital.

Police have not released a motive for the stabbing. But say they are not actively looking for any suspects at this time. The case remains under investigation.

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[UPDATE] Tallahassee, FL -- March 16, 2012 --1:11pm

The Florida State University Police Department have identified the persons involved in yesterday's stabbing as 19-year-old Gabriella Stroude and 19-year-old Reginald Luster.

Police have not released a motive for the stabbing. But say the two knew each other. No charges have been filed at this time.

Reginald Luster is listed as in fair condition at Tallahassee Memorial.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[UPDATE] Tallahassee, FL -- March 16, 2012 --12:45pm

The Florida State University Police Department says that the woman involved in yesterday's stabbing at Ragans Hall has been released from the hospital and is staying in an undisclosed location. The man involved in the stabbing is still in the hospital.

FSUPD has not said what, if any, charges will be filed. The names of the two have not been released.

________________________________

UPDATE:Tallahassee, FL -- March 15, 2012 --10:14 p.m. By Mike Springer

FSU Police still don't have a motive for the stabbing that left two FSU students seriously injured inside a dorm room just up the street from the campus police station.

"I was shocked when I got home that it was where we live," says FSU student Samantha Schindler.

Schindler lives at Ragans Hall. It was inside a fourth-floor dorm here at building one that two 19-year-old FSU students were stabbed. The female student a sophomore. The male, a junior.

"This is generally considered the most ritzy dorm and it happens here," says FSU student Lucas Heacock.

When police arrived they found a man and a woman on the ground, both with stab wounds.

Police say the injuries are serious...but both were conscious while EMT's wheeled them out.

"I only saw a glimpse of the fourth floor and there were just people in suits and name tags, all very official, up and down the halls," says Heacock.

Police say the two students were arguing inside the dorm room right before the stabbing. Police won't say what they were arguing about, but they say the two knew each other. However, police would not elaborate on the nature of their relationship.

News of the stabbing spread quickly across campus through the school's text alert system.

"Me and my friends were on our way back to my dorm and we got the text at about the same time we saw all the police cars and we were really scared," says Heacock.

Less than an hour after the initial text alert was sent, the university issued another saying 'all was clear'. Police are not actively searching for any suspects.

Police have not released the names of either student at this time. Nor
have any charges been filed

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UPDATE: Tallahassee, FL -- March 15, 2012 --9:45 p.m.

Major Jim Russell with FSU PD says both people stabbed are 19 year old FSU students.

He is not yet releasing their names or home towns.

Russell described both their injuries as "serious stab wounds" but says both were conscious and talking when they were sent to the hospital.

Russell says the young woman lived on the fourth floor of Ragans Hall in building one.

He says folks at the dorm reported a disturbance but by the time the FSU officer arrived, both the man and the woman were injured and on the ground. The officer called in on his radio "two down" and called for paramedics.

Russell says officers have interviewed witnesses and will be interviewing the two FSU students injured in the stabbing after doctors tend to their medical needs.

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UPDATE: Tallahassee, FL -- March 15, 2012 --9 p.m.

Police have not released the names of the two people stabbed inside a forth-floor dorm at Ragan's Hall. But police say the female is a 19-year-old FSU sophomore and the male is a 19-year-old FSU junior. Police say both suffered serious stab wounds, but were conscious when taken to the hospital.

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Tallahassee, FL -- March 15, 2012 --
FSU Police Press Release

On March 15, 2012 at about 3:15pm, the FSU Police Department responded to a report of an altercation at Ragans Hall, Building 1, on the Florida State University campus. Upon arrived the responding officer discovered two people stabbed in a 4th floor residence hall room. Additional officers and medical services quickly responded and secured the scene. It was quickly ascertained that the only two people involved in the incident were those that were stabbed and that they personally knew each other. It was determined that the two had been involved in a violent altercation, and at some point an edged weapon was introduced. Both parties sustained serious wounds, but were stabilized and transported to the hospital. The FSU Police Department is continuing the investigation to determine the details of the events leading up to and during the stabbing. The Florida State University initiated an “FSU Alert” to notify the campus community and to direct persons on campus to stay clear of Ragans Hall. This was done to facilitate the ingress and egress of emergency personnel. The “All Clear” was sent via the FSU Alert System as soon as emergency medical personnel were clear with the patients. There are no outstanding suspects and the campus has resumed normal operating conditions.

As more additional information is available in the interests of the University community, updates will be posted on the primary source of FSU emergency information updates, alerts.fsu.edu.

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UPDATE March 15, 2012

Tallahassee, FL -- There was a double stabbing at FSU shortly before 3PM this afternoon at Ragans Hall. Two people stabbed each other in a dorm room next to the police station.

A campus alert was sent out about FSU police being on the scene of the stabbing. About twenty minutes later, another alert was released telling students there was no threat and that they could return to their normal activities.

The two suspects were taken to the hospital. Both are expected to make a full recovery. As for charges police are still investigating. That’s all we know right now.

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March 15 4pm

*FSU ALERT!* ALL CLEAR! All subjects related to the double stabbing at Ragans Hall have been detained. There are NO subjects on the loose and NO continuing threat to campus. You may return to normal operations. Law enforcement will continue to investigate. Expect law enforcement presence on scene for a extended duration.

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March 15 3:47pm

*FSU ALERT!*

The Florida State University Police Department is responding to a reported double stabbing at Regans Hall #1. At this time, it is assumed that the responsible parties are the victims. There is no report of an assailant at large at this time. Regardless, all persons in the area should use caution and avoid the Regans Hall Complex. Numerous emergency vehicles are responding or are on scene.

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March 15, 2012 3:45pm by Julie Montanaro

FSU Police are on the scene of a double stabbing at Ragans Hall. That's a dormitory on Learning Way.


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