Charlie Adelson found guilty in murder-for-hire of Dan Markel
Jury reached verdict after three hours of deliberation
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - A jury found Charlie Adelson guilty of murder, conspiracy, and solicitation in connection to the 2014 murder of his former brother-in-law Dan Markel.
The guilty verdict came after seven days of testimony and three hours of deliberations.
Charlie Adelson dropped his head onto the defense table as the clerk read the verdict aloud just minutes after 5 p.m. Monday.
“Count 1: We the jury find as follows as to count one of the indictment, first degree murder, the defendant is guilty of first-degree murder.”
“Count 2: We the jury find as follows as to count 2 of the indictment, conspiracy to commit first degree murder, the defendant is guilty of conspiracy to commit first degree murder.”
“Count 3: We the jury find as follows as to count 3 of the indictment, solicitation to commit first degree murder, the defendant is guilty.”
The Markel family - father Phil, mother Ruth and sister Shelly - spoke to the media as they left the courtroom Monday afternoon.
“Unbelievable joy, happiness,” Phil Markel said upon hearing the verdict.
“Joy and happiness,” Shelly Markel said. “It’s a funny thing to say but it’s sort of tinged with this feeling of relief. It’s been a long time.”
“It’s so long coming,” Phil Markel said. “It got to this point and it’s just a good feeling.”
“I’m feeling thrilled. I’m feeling relieved,” prosecutor Georgia Cappleman said afterward. “I’m feeling like a lot of hard work has paid off.”
Adelson will face a mandatory life sentence for the first degree murder conviction.
Adelson was the third person tried in the murder of the FSU law professor and the fourth convicted.
Magbanua - like Adelson - had denied any involvement in the murder for hire plot. She turned state’s evidence, however, once she was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Magbanua testified against Adelson last week and said while she wasn’t promised anything for her testimony against him, she was “hoping” for a reduction in her sentence.
Prosecutor Georgia Cappleman would not comment on whether Charlie Adelson’s conviction marks the end of the case or if any other members of the Adelson family could face charges in the future.
“I don’t know the answer to that question yet, so stay tuned,” Cappleman said.
Charlie Adelson’s sentencing date was set for December 12.
WCTV Legal Analyst Joe Bodiford provided his perspective on deliberations and the verdict.
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