Magbanua sentenced to life in prison, Adelson requests pre-trial release
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Katherine Magbanua has been sentenced to life in prison with no probation or parole for her role in the murder of FSU law professor Dan Markel.
Following a victim impact statement from the Markel family, Magbanua was sentenced to life in prison on her first-degree murder charge, and an additional 60 consecutive years for the charges of conspiracy and solicitation to commit murder. Those were the max penalties for all of the charges.
Shelly Markel, Dan Markel’s sister, described her childhood with her brother during the impact statement.
“The order of our world has been cruelly reversed,” she said. “It makes me so angry.”
Shelly Markel also pointed out during her statement that last week marked eight years since her brother’s murder in Betton Hills.
Magbanua’s defense attorney Tara Kawass shared a message from her client to the Markel family.
“She does think about Dan Markel every single day. She thinks about his kids every single day,” Kawass said. “Justice is still ongoing and has not been reached in this case. And she wants each and every person who had a hand in this... to be brought to justice.”
After an unrelated sentencing hearing, Charlie Adelson’s case management took place in the same courtroom.
Adelson’s attorneys filed for a pre-trial release. The judge said there will be a hearing on that within the next 60 days to settle the issue.
Assistant state attorney Georgia Cappleman said they’d like to take Adelson to trial in early 2023, possibly between January and March. She said she wants it to be a three-week trial.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Katherine Magbanua is now back in the same Tallahassee courtroom where a jury found her guilty of murder, conspiracy and solicitation in the murder of FSU Professor Dan Markel.
Magbanua’s sentencing hearing started at 9 a.m. in courtroom 3G.
She’s facing an automatic life sentence for the first-degree murder conviction and up to 30 years in prison on each of the other charges.
Magbanua is the third person to be convicted in the July 2014 murder of FSU professor Dan Markel. Prosecutors contend she was the go-between in an elaborate murder-for-hire scheme fueled by a custody battle over Markel’s two children.
Markel’s family is expected to share a victim impact statement via Zoom at the sentencing hearing, according to prosecutors.
It’s unclear whether Magbanua will make a statement or if her defense team will call any witnesses to testify on her behalf.
Magbanua’s longtime boyfriend Sigfredo Garcia is already serving a life sentence in the deadly plot and his friend, Luis Rivera, is serving a 19-year prison sentence in exchange for his testimony against them. Rivera testified the three were paid $100,000 for the hit job.
Charlie Adelson, Magbanua’s ex-boyfriend and brother of Markel’s ex-wife, was arrested earlier this year and accused of financing the murder-for-hire scheme. He has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial in the Leon County Jail.
Adelson is expected to appear in court Friday morning too for a case management hearing.
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