Day Thirteen: Jury Recommends Life Without Parole For Garcia, The Gunman Who Killed Markel

Oct 15, 2019

Credit Alicia Devine, Pool / Tallahassee Democrat

Jurors have recommended life without parole for Sigfredo Garcia, the man convicted of killing former Florida State University law professor Dan Markel.

During the sentencing hearing, Assistant State Attorney Georgia Cappleman pointed to aggravating factors she said made the death penalty warranted--including that she says the crime was committed for financial gain, and that it was calculated and premeditated.

“Calculated means having a careful plan or a prearranged design to commit murder. In this case they were careful enough to follow and stalk their victim,” Cappleman said.

But Garcia’s defense attorney argued Katherine Magbanua was controlling Garcia, which he says is a mitigating factor.

Police say Magbanua was the link between Garcia and Markels in-laws in an alleged murder-for-hire plot.

Garcia and Magbanua were tried in tandem, but after the jury couldn’t come to a conclusion in Maganua’s case last week, the judge declared a mistrial for her. She remains in jail and will face trial again. Pre-trial hearings in her case are set for next week.