Justices reject an inmate's appeal in the murder of a Florida State University grad student
The state Supreme Court on Thursday rejected an appeal by a Death Row inmate convicted in the 2010 murder of a Florida State University graduate student whose body was found in St. Johns County.
Justices unanimously ruled against Quentin Marcus Truehill, one of three men accused of going on a crime spree after escaping from a Louisiana prison. That spree included kidnapping FSU graduate student Vincent Binder as he walked home from a study session in Tallahassee. Binder’s body was later found in St. Johns County.
Truehill and the other men were arrested after traveling to Miami. A St. Johns County jury convicted Truehill of first-degree murder and kidnapping, and a judge sentenced him to death.
Truehill, now 35, raised a series of issues in the appeal, including that he had received “ineffective assistance of counsel” during his trial. In part, he argued that a defense attorney did not properly address DNA evidence in the case. But the Supreme Court rejected the argument.
“In sum, there is overwhelming evidence linking Truehill to the murder and kidnapping of Binder,” the 45-page opinion said. “Based on this record, we find that there is no reasonable probability that the jury’s verdict of guilt would have been different even if the challenged DNA evidence were wholly excluded.”