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Gilchrist County couple earn
Landowner of the Year Award
(from left) Commissioner Joshua Kellam, Vice Chairman Michael W. Sole, Kay Corbin, Ken Corbin, Chairman Robert A. Spottswood, Commissioner Gary Lester, and FWC Executive Director Eric Sutton stand together during the presentation ceremony for the award. (Not pictured FWC Commissioner Sonya Rood and FWC Commissioner Gary Nicklaus. The FWC has seven commissioners.)
Story and Photo Provided
By Tammy Sapp of the FWC
Published July 18, 2019 at 11:19 a.m.
STUART -- At its July meeting in Stuart, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) presented Ken and Kay Corbin of Trenton with the Landowner of the Year award for the couple’s generous support of the FWC’s Youth Hunting Program of Florida. This program provides safe, educational, mentored hunts for 12- to 17-year-olds so they can experience hunting and learn about conservation.
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The Corbins, who own a cattle and hay farm in Gilchrist County, open their property to youth who otherwise might not have the opportunity, so that those young people can experience hunting through the Youth Hunting Program.
“Those of us who can, need to do our part in helping foster the hunting legacy by getting kids in the outdoors and teaching them about nature and wildlife,” said Ken Corbin, a veteran of the United States Air Force and a retired City of Trenton employee. “By volunteering to introduce youth to hunting, we can help uphold hunting and create a new generation of conservationists.”
Since 2010, Ken and his wife, Kay, have hosted 13 fall youth hunts on their property. During these hunts, more than 40 young people have learned about wildlife, conservation and safe, responsible hunting.
“The Corbins are involved throughout the entire process and do everything they can to help the kids have a good experience, including planting food plots, scouting for deer, repositioning ground blinds and having camp fires after the hunt,” said Tyler Allen, Youth Hunting Program of Florida coordinator. “Families like the Corbins, who open their properties to provide outdoor opportunities to youth, are the reason our hunting tradition will continue on.”
“We just absolutely love being able to get kids involved in hunting and the outdoors through the Youth Hunting Program of Florida, and our biggest thrill is when a kid harvests their first animal,” Ken and Kay Corbin said. “We both get so much satisfaction seeing kids get excited learning about conservation.”
To find out how to become a volunteer landowner or to learn more about the Youth Hunting Program of Florida, click HERE.
Ellie Schiller Education Center
closed after Town Council vote;
Trails and tower remain open at WGP
By Jeff M. Hardison © July 10, 2019 at 3:39 p.m.
YANKEETOWN -- On July 1, the Yankeetown Town Council voted to permanently close the Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve (WGP) Ellie Schiller Education Center, according to a July 8 email from the Friends of the WGP.
The Friends of the WGP plan to meet in August to discuss the impact of the closure and options for the future, according to what was noted in the WGP Friends’ July 8 email.
Yankeetown Town Clerk-Treasurer-Administrator Sherri MacDonald provided insight Wednesday (July 10) when she was asked about this situation.
Yankeetown Mayor Jack Schofield, Vice Mayor Jean Holbrook and Council members Jeffry St. John, Eddie "Buck" Redd and Daniel "Danny" Pearson, MacDonald said, must care for the fiscal health and welfare of the town.
Faced with what appears currently to be insurmountable expenses for the operational costs of the WGP Ellie Schiller Education Center, MacDonald said, the Town Council voted to temporarily closed the structure for use.
One big expense is the required replacement of a septic tank, MacDonald explained. The Yankeetown Town Council in April sought bids to replace a septic tank, MacDonald said. The lone bidder submitted a bid for $47,000, MacDonald said.
She said the WGP is in an extremely sensitive environment.
When no bids were submitted after the second request for bids closed on June 28, the Town Council voted July 1 to temporarily close the education center.
An increase of $3,000 more for elevator maintenance this year, she said, added to the expenses of electricity and telephone service at the building.
There were only nine applications for using the education center building this year, MacDonald said, and there were only 13 applications for its use the year before.
The Town Council conducted two workshops with the Friends of the WGP, the Trustees of the WGP and anyone else who was interested in helping with the costs for operating the education center, MacDonald said.
A temporary fix for the septic tank replacement issue, she said, was the use of port-o-lets for those occasions where the facility was used most recently. Apparently, that is not a viable option for an ongoing solution to the problem.
While the Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve Ellie Schiller Education Center is closed until further notice, MacDonald said the gates are open from dawn until dusk for the public to use the trails and the tower at the Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve.
The Friends of the WGP note the following on a website for the preserve.
The WGP is a 413-acre parcel of undeveloped wetlands located on Florida’s Nature Coast. It consists of mixed hardwood, pine, and cabbage palm forest, tidal marshes, and several salt ponds.
The preserve has a 30-foot observation tower, salt pond boardwalk, Gulf accessible canoe/kayak dock, and a 4,500 square foot education center.
As noted in this story above, the education center is closed for now.
Individuals who are looking for a great place for nature photography, hiking, paddling, or bird watching are welcome to come and enjoy the preserve.
The Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve is located at 1001 Old Rock Road, just off Levy County Road 40 West, in Yankeetown. The Preserve is open daily from dawn to dusk.
The Town of Yankeetown owns the preserve.
Seahorse Key Lighthouse
relit on Friday - July 5;
Key is open today - July 6
Golf Cart Parade was big on July 4
Story and Video
By Jeff M. Hardison © July 5, 2019 at 3:29 p.m.
Updated July 6, 2019 at 7:39 a.m.
CEDAR KEY – A celebration of the relighting of the lamp in the lighthouse on Seahorse Key, which is a few miles offshore from Cedar Key and is only accessible by boat, was set for Friday (July 5).
Today (July 6), Seahorse Key is available for members of the public to visit.
Cedar Key interests are promoted the event with a person reenacting as one of the assistant lighthouse keepers, and a couple of musical performers were set to be in downtown Historic Cedar Key that night.
Carol McQueen dons period clothing to portray Catharine Dorgan Hobday, the Assistant Lighthouse Keeper on Seahorse Key from 1872 until Hobday’s death in 1879. She is schedued to act in this part from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. at Seahorse Key on Saturday (July 6).
In this five-minute video, many of the golf carts in the parade on Cedar Key on The Fourth of July are seen. Among the carts and riders seen here is Carol McQueen portraying Catharine Dorgan Hobday, the Assistant Lighthouse Keeper on Seahorse Key from 1872 until Hobday’s death in 1879. Some of the golf carts are Independence Day themed. Some of them are lighthouse themed. The range of decorating talent is full spectrum, with all of them being at the higher end of the fun and beauty scale.
Video By Jeff M. Hardison © July 5, 2019
All Copyrights Reserved - This may not be copied in part or whole
A little more than a minute into the video, the golf cart with actress performing as the historic lighthouse assistant keeper (Carol McQueen) is seen.
Photo by Jeff M. Hardison © July 5, 2019
Carol McQueen, a retired director of the Levy County Tourist Development Council, is portraying a noteworthy female of local history.
She was among the people who participated in the Cedar Key Golf Cart Parade on the Fourth of July.
Tonight (Friday, July 5) the lighthouse is scheduled to once again be lit on Seahorse Key, as Cedar Key city officials, the University of Florida, the Cedar Key Historical Society Museum and the United States National Wildlife Services join forces to celebrate this historic event.
From 7 to 9 p.m. tonight, Carol McQueen is scheduled portray Catharine Hobday, the only female assistant keeper of the lighthouse Seahorse Key.
Everyone is invited to visit the Cedar Historical Society Museum to hear about her remarkable life.
At 8 p.m. tonight in the museum on Second Street, there is a scheduled unveiling of a new addition to the museum. The original Lighthouse Bible, in which Mrs. Hobday’s burial on Seahorse Key was inscripted by her son and Lighthouse Keeper Andrew Hobday is scheduled to be unveiled.
Meanwhile, everyone is invited to enjoy an evening immersed in the fantastic history of Cedar key along with complimentary wine, beer, cheese, coffee, tea and goodies.
Unique entertainment in an intimate setting is set to be in the office of norm D. Fugate, 497 second street. The entertainment group known as Lucky Mud is scheduled to perform there.
Reggie Stacy, a well-known local singer, is scheduled to perform at the 1842 Daily Grind and Mercantile, located at 598 Second St. between 7 and 9 p.m.
The lighting is slated for 9:30 p.m. tonight (July 5), and will be visible from the beachfront area near First and G Street.
On Saturday (July 6), during the day from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., Seahorse Key Lighthouse will be open to the public.
Also, there is a big day on Saturday (July 6) out on Seahorse Key. It is free and open to the public to visit the Lighthouse.
Everyone is invited to meet Lighthouse Keeper Catharine Dorgan Hobday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday. Boat rides go out from Cedar Key to Seahorse Key (3 miles). Those rides are available for a fee on Dock Street, near the beach that is next to the City Park.
Seahorse Key, including the lighthouse, became part of the Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge, established in 1929. The University of Florida has leased 3.2 acres of the wildlife refuge, including the lighthouse, for use as a marine laboratory since 1952. The lighthouse is used as a dormitory for students.
A relatively concise but thorough report, which includes the names of all of the lighthouse keepers and assistants from 1854 to 1914-plus can be found by visiting a website by clicking HERE.
Levy County Voting Precinct 7
returns to Williston City Hall
Published July 3, 2019 at 8:09 a.m.
WILLISTON -- In 2018, Levy County Voting Precinct 7 voters temporarily had their polling location changed due to construction at Williston City Hall.
The polling location for Precinct 7 has returned to the Williston City Hall for all future elections.
Williston City Hall is located at 50 N.W. Main St., in Williston.
Levy County voters, who vote at Precinct 7 on Election Day, will receive new voter information cards reflecting recent precinct changes. The changes were approved by the Levy County Board of County Commissioners at its June 4 meeting.
All voters have the option of Voting by Mail (Absentee), or voting early. To Vote by Mail, voters can make their request from the website, by email (firstname.lastname@example.org), by phone (352-486-5163), through the mail, or via fax (352-486-5146).
Requests to vote by mail must include the voter's address and date of birth, while written requests must also include the voter's signature.
For more information about any issue relating to voting in Levy County, please contact the Office of Levy County Supervisor of Elections Tammy Jones by calling 352-486-5163, or send an email to email@example.com.
Voters can use the "Find Your Precinct" option at https://www.votelevy.com/, or call the Supervisor of Elections Office at 352-486-5163 to find a voter's polling location.
In addition, all voters will be mailed a personalized sample ballot prior to the start of Early Voting for both the Primary and General Elections, which will include the voter's polling place information.
Volunteers save BPR;
set for launch at 9:05 p.m. on July 4
Bronson Town Councilman Berlon Weeks tells other Council members that he wants to give the Bronson Parks and Recreation method of providing for team sports for young people in Bronson another year. Weeks changed his stance after 44 people showed up Saturday in the park. People will be in James H. Cobb Park again on the Fourth of July.
Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © July 2, 2019 at 7:29 a.m.
BRONSON -- With 44 people showing up as volunteers Saturday (June 29) at James H. Cobb Park, the tide turned for Bronson Parks Recreation (BPR) continuing as a department in the Town of Bronson for at least another year.
The phone where Town Councilwoman Beatrice Roberts seconded the motion by Berlon Weeks to keep the BPR active for another year is seen here, moments before the start of the meeting Monday night (July 1).
Three of the five people who unanimously voted on the motion by Berlon Weeks, seconded by Beatrice Roberts, to keep BPR active are seen here listening to Weeks share his thoughts on why he chose to not seek the dissolution of the BPR. They are (from left) Mayor Robert Partin, Town Councilman James Beck and Vice Mayor Jason Hunt.
For at least a couple of months now, Bronson Town Councilman Berlon Weeks has been leading a movement to convert the BPR back to a private non-profit group, like the Bronson Youth League (BYL) -- that the town government took over five years ago due to the failure of BYL to function without repeatedly seeking Town Council intervention.
On Monday (July 1), Councilman Weeks did an about-face and made a motion to keep the BPR as the method for organized youth sports games in the town. Town Councilwoman Beatrice Roberts, who has been steadfast in her support of continuing the BPR, seconded the motion via telephone.
Councilwoman Roberts was unable to attend the meeting Monday night as she continues her recovery from surgery she had on Thursday (June 27).
Mayor Robert Partin, Vice Mayor Jason Hunt and Councilman James Beck all voted in favor of the Weeks'-Roberts' motion -- heralding a year of potential growth for sports in the Town of Bronson. This positive turn of events appears to have resulted from the promise of people volunteering more to help BPR Director Curtis Stacy as he leads the programs.
Before Weeks made his motion, Mayor Partin spoke about the work day in the park on Saturday – which included a chance for people to volunteer to help the BPR.
The mayor said he is very appreciative of everyone who showed up at the park to paint, replace bleachers and perform other work to improve the facility.
Weeks said that when he was appointed, he could not find records for three years of the budget. That is why he thought the BPR was draining the town’s coffers.
With the 44 volunteers who showed up, Weeks sees the BPR can thrive.
“The only way for this to work again,” Weeks said, “is for there to be volunteerism that is there to help (BPR Director) Curtis (Stacy).”
Weeks said he sees a need for a revision on how Bronson Public Works handles park maintenance. The Town Council member said he sees areas of the park that need to be restored to a better condition, including repairs to some structures.
By looking at park maintenance from the Public Works perspective and from the BPR perspective, Weeks said he thinks the town’s recreation department can be a sustainable asset going into the future.
Plaque Presentation Planned
On the Fourth of July (Thursday), there is a plaque presentation planned at 7 p.m. to be in James H. Cobb Park.
The plaque has the names of the five women who helped bring the park to fruition decades ago. The park was named in memory or a town worker who died after suffering from heat stroke while on duty.
At 9:05 p.m. on the Fourth of July, Bronson Fire Chief Dennis Russell and his team of firefighters are prepared to launch the fireworks, which have attracted hundreds of people on this annual patriotic day – when Americans celebrate the Declaration of Independence from England’s royal tyranny of that time.
Jury rules man is guilty
of first degree murder
Umesh Madhav Mhatre, forensic psychiatrist – witness for the defense
Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © June 27, 2019 at 9:19 p.m.
Updated June 30, 2019 at 11:09 p.m. - With Link To Archived Stores
CROSS CITY – Four men and eight women ruled Thursday afternoon (June 27) that a man killed his girlfriend with premeditation on Sept. 4, 2017.
Joshua Davidson is tentatively scheduled to be sentenced by Third Judicial Circuit Court Judge David W. Fina on Aug. 12. The maximum sentence in this case is life in prison.
The state is conducting a pre-trial investigation to provide the judge with information he needs to impose a just and wise sentence.
This first degree murder case was especially unusual, because the defendant chose to seek a ruling of not guilty by reason of insanity as a possible choice for the jurors.
During his 19 years of trying murder cases as a prosecutor, Third Judicial Circuit Assistant State Attorney John Weed said after the trial that he has only seen two instances in murder trials where a person sought to be declared not guilty by reason of insanity.
As Judge Fina spoke to the jurors Thursday, before he allowed Assistant State Attorney Weed and Assistant Public Defender Nathan Marshburn to give their closing arguments, the judge reminded jurors that what those attorneys say in closing arguments is not evidence. Judge Fina told jurors they must rely only on the evidence presented during trial in the courtroom.
Marshburn objected a few times to some of the things Weed said in his closing argument, but the judge overruled all of those objections, and as part of one of those rulings, the judge reminded the jury that what is said in closing arguments is not evidence.
First, the prosecution gave its closing statement. Then, the defense gave its final argument. The prosecution had time to rebut the defense’s statements, per the rules of criminal procedure in Florida courts.
The judge spent about 30 minutes reading instructions to jurors to define certain terms and the process to assure the 12 members of the jury could follow the law as they made their ruling.
The jury entered the jury room at about 10:56 a.m. on Thursday. The ruling of guilty of first degree murder with the use of a weapon was read at about 12:56 p.m., including Dixie County Clerk Dana Johnson polling each individual juror, upon request of the defense, to assure every single person voted “Guilty” of first degree murder, while using a weapon.
In his closing argument, Assistant State Attorney Weed reminded the jury that Marshburn was burdened with the demand to present “clear and convincing” evidence that Davidson was so insane at the time of the murder that he did not know what he was doing was wrong.
The jury, Weed said, to conclude that Davidson was insane at that time, must reach the determination with a “firm belief and without hesitation,” according to the law.
Two psychologists – Dr. Chris P. Robison and Dr. Gregory Prichard -- both said it was their opinion that Davidson was not that insane at the time in question.
Joining them in the case against Davidson was Dr. Raycheal Roberts.
Dr. Roberts, a psychologist who was at the state mental hospital in Chattahoochee, saw Davidson for almost six months, because Davidson was there being treated to assure he was competent to stand trial.
Dr. Roberts found Davidson to be malingering, faking symptoms or exaggerating them, which she proved by having him take an objective test.
Dr. Robison administered two other objectives tests to further determine if Davidson was faking or exaggerating symptoms – malingering. All three tests proved Davidson was malingering. The results from one of those tests, Dr. Robison said, also showed conclusively that the patient was knowingly answering in a manner to skew results in favor of proving himself to be insane.
The defense used a forensic psychiatrist – Dr. Umesh Madhav Mhatre – who shared his opinion that Davidson was insane at the time he stabbed Powers to death.
While the various mental health professionals all had their opinions, no one except Davidson himself is alive to have witnessed what happened when he stabbed the victim to death. So, there was no independent witness.
Davidson chose not to take the witness stand. Jurors were reminded to not give that any weight to his choice as they made their ruling.
Weed pointed out that two forensic psychologists who are trained in this specialized field of criminal mental health both said Davidson was not that insane when he murdered Powers.
Dr. Roberts testified on Wednesday that she found Davidson to be malingering to avoid being returned to the Dixie County Jail from the hospital, because he preferred the hospital to jail.
Weed asked jurors how they can, “without hesitation,” believe there is “clear and convincing” evidence that Davidson was insane when he killed Powers – when two psychologists shared their professional opinions that he was not insane when he committed the heinous crime.
The prosecutor presented two other points in his closing argument. Could Davidson have been faking mental illness to obtain drugs? Also, Weed intimated that this man who in the past had helped people through the Florida Department of Children and Families to obtain Social Security benefits for being disabled, may have become diagnosed with mental illness so that he would receive the disability benefit from Social Security.
Davidson received Social Security benefits for being disabled because of his mental illness. Dr. Mhatre asserted on Wednesday that Social Security takes great care to assure people are actually disabled before awarding disability payments.
Weed reminded jurors, in his closing argument, that Dr. Robison found Davidson had a personality disorder. And that personality flaw is that Davidson is possessive and overly controlling of women.
“That is something significant to consider in this case,” Weed said, “considering that Wendy Powers was his girlfriend at this time.”
Having a personality disorder, Weed added, is not something exclusive to a person suffering from insanity. It just shows Davidson may have had a motive to commit the killing, Weed said.
The prosecutor reminded jurors that Giovanni Davidson, the defendant’s own son, did not know Joshua Davidson had mental health issues until after the murder of Powers.
Attorney Weed also pointed out instances from testimony in the trial, which proved Davidson knew right from wrong and that he was functional in society – despite any alleged mental health issues, where he might have been under the spell of severe psychosis.
By his proved malingering, Davidson undermined his own credibility, Weed said. The defendant is not forthcoming, Weed said. He is deceitful, Weed said. He is manipulative, Weed said.
This defendant had a consciousness of guilt, Weed said, to the point that he faked or exaggerated mental illness as a method to be found by a jury to be not guilty by reason of insanity.
Another strong point that Weed made as he pointed out to listeners with common sense, is that if Davidson heard voices telling him to kill Powers, and he was unable to resist those voices and he killed her, and those same voices then told him to kill himself, why did Davidson not kill himself?
By looking at all of the evidence presented, and the law, Weed said, the indictment returned by the Dixie County Grand Jury – composed of jurors – charging Davidson with first degree murder is the choice the state wants jurors to choose.
In his final argument, Assistant Public Defender Marshburn pointed out many, many instances where and when, before the murder, Davidson visited Meridian Behavior Health in Lake City, The Centers in Ocala and The Vines in Ocala to help him with his mental illness.
The defense attorney reminded jurors that the man’s mother said he was discharged from the United States Navy due to mental illness.
Marshburn said “the evidence is overwhelming” that Davidson suffers from mental health issues.
The defense attorney asserted that Davidson committed the crime, but at that time, Davidson could not tell right from wrong or could not control his behavior because of severe mental defect or illness.
Florida law provides that, as a result of him being criminally insane, Davidson should not be held criminally responsible for his behavior.
As Marshburn read reports from the three places where Davidson sought mental health help, he repeated a few times that Davidson thought “the Illuminati” and “Free Masons” “were out to get him.”
Defense attorney Marshburn said that while Assistant State Attorney Weed questioned Dr. Mhatre about his standing as a forensic psychiatrist, Dr. Mhatre had been practicing psychiatry before that specialized field was established. Marshburn reminded jurors, too, that this expert witness had been called to testify in many cases, including the Ted Bundy trial.
Dr. Mhatre was appointed by Gov. Bob Graham, Gov. Bob Martinez and Gov. Lawton Chiles to be the psychiatrist to determine competency for people scheduled for execution by the state.
On Wednesday, all of the expert witnesses gave verbal statements to show their pedigrees in their profession. While Dr. Mhatre attended medical school and could write prescriptions, he did not apply testing to subjects as a psychologist does.
Perhaps the strongest point in comparing the psychiatrist with the psychologists is that Dr. Mhatre simply accepted Davidson’s version of reality as being true. This was in contrast with the psychologists who applied objective tests with results that proved the defendant purposefully misrepresented truth, according to what was said in open court.
Both sets of experts shared with the jury and other listeners that they all have been appointed to serve on both the prosecution and the defense sides of criminal cases, and they all served in various circuits of Florida, perhaps even all 20 circuits of Florida’s 67 counties.
Joshua Davidson, Marshburn reminded the jurors, thought Wendy Powers had poisoned his food. His client thought his son and girlfriend were messing with his mind, Marshburn said as he recited records of reported delusions of the suspect.
As the defense attorney attempted to show evidence to prove his client was insane when he murdered his girlfriend, Marshburn said Davidson gave a 9-1-1 operator the wrong address, when he called to report someone had put smelly garbage in his house – in the very wee hours of the morning before Davidson killed his girlfriend.
Also, Davidson called 9-1-1 to report that he stabbed her with two knives after he killed her, according to the 9-1-1 call played in open court.
Defense attorney Marshburn asked any juror who believed Davidson was legally insane to stand firm and not be swayed, even if 11 other jurors thought he was sane.
Despite a valiant effort to convince the jury that there was clear and convincing evidence to prove his client was so crazy that he did not have the ability to comprehend his action at the time when Davidson repeatedly stabbed Powers to death, the 12 jurors all ruled Davidson was guilty of first degree murder while using a weapon.
The premeditation requirement of first degree murder was explained to the jurors.
In one version of the stories that relate to this murder, Marshburn said his client awoke to what he thought was his girlfriend attempting to strike him.
“She had done it in the past,” Marshburn said.
Davidson, diagnosed to be a schizophrenic, reportedly had gone four days without sleep and little food. He had quit taking medicine “for some time” to control symptoms of schizophrenia, Marshburn said.
“When Wendy woke him,” Marshburn said, “he was in a psychotic state, separated from reality. He killed Wendy, but he did not understand the consequences of what he was doing when that happened. He was legally insane at that moment.”
While the defense attorney believed his stance in this case, all 12 jurors agreed that it was not believable enough. Within two hours of deliberation, they all voted to say Joshua Davidson is guilty of first degree murder.
Assistant State Attorney Weed told the jurors that the “clear and convincing” degree that Marshburn is forced to meet, means his case for Davidson being legally insane means the evidence must be “precise, explicit, lacking in confusion, and of such weight that it produces a firm belief, without hesitation, about the matter in issue.”
These are some of the jury instructions.
Weed reminded the jurors that the two psychologists who said Davidson was not insane when he committed the crime “… looked at everything,” including the several pages of documents the defense provided to catalog Davidson’s treatment at the various mental health facilities.
Weed carefully laid out his reasons for the jury to choose first degree murder as the verdict. He went through the applicable law, and he asserted the evidence showed the following.
Wendy Powers was dead.
Joshua Davidson killed her by stabbing her repeatedly with a knife.
The killing of Powers by Davidson was premeditated, Weed said.
Killing with premeditation is killing with the conscious design to do so, Weed said the law states. Making a decision to kill, he said, is premeditation. The decision must be present in the mind at the time of the killing, he added.
The period of time between when the person decides to kill another person and when he or she performs the act, Weed intimated, must include some amount of time for the perpetrator to reflect.
“He can form the conscious decision to kill within a matter of seconds,” Weed said in his closing argument.
Weed gave an example by saying that he does not like co-counsel Assistant State Attorney Will Washington, and then he shoots him immediately after making that statement. That matter of seconds, Weed said, is premeditation.
“Objection,” Assistant Public Defender Marshburn said. “Misstatement of the law.”
“Overruled,” Judge Fina said.
The prosecutor went on to say that Davidson had a conscious decision to kill, prior to performing the murder.
Evidence of this conscious decision to kill is reflected in the evidence, Weed said.
“Action speaks louder than words,” Weed said.
Jurors again saw photographs of the victim, that included the many stab wounds to the abdomen and two stab wounds below the chin, and ultimately severing a jugular vein.
The repeated stabbing in the abdomen and then the neck may have been part of a reason the jury understood this was a premeditated murder. It was not just a few stabs to wound the victim.
As the victim was stabbed, the defendant had time to reflect on his action – which he continued until he stabbed her enough to kill her.
“It’s not like on TV where a person is stabbed and they fall over dead,” Weed said. “All of these stabbings in the abdomen and chest area were mostly superficial – not immediately fatal, and she was probably conscious at the time.”
He added this murder went on for some time.
“It’s not just a stab and that’s it,” Weed said.
Cuts on the victim’s hand also show it was a struggle by her as she attempted to stay alive, Weed said.
Weed said this evidence does not show overkill. Instead, it shows Davidson kept stabbing her until she died – reflecting premeditation and a time to reflect before finishing the act of premeditated murder by using a weapon.
As part of this ruling, Weed said, the jurors had to understand this killing was not justified by self-defense or by any other lawful taking of life allowed by Florida law.
The 12 jurors completed their assignment. They made the decision.
As for Judge Fina imposing a sentence, as noted he is awaiting a pre-sentence investigation report to be given to him. As it stands now, at 9 a.m. on Aug. 12 in the Dixie County Courthouse, the sentencing of Davidson for the crime of first degree murder will be on the docket (which may include some number of other judicial actions by that judge).
Assistant Public Defender Marshburn said he is needed for a circuit court trial in Lake City on that day. The judge said to pencil in Aug. 12 at Cross City for this imposition of a sentence, however that date may be changed.
Publisher’s Note: To see all three days' coverage of the murder trial, click HERE.
Keeping It Fine In Year Nine;
Contest helps people share travel fun
and enter to win one of two gas cards
By Jeff M. Hardison © June 16, 2019 at 9:09 a.m.
THE WORLD – Everyone in the world, except staff and family of HardisonInk.com, who wants to participate can enter to win one of two $25 gasoline cards.
This is part of the celebration of nine years of existence for HardisonInk.com.
There are going to be two drawings for winners. One is July 10. One is July 31.
“This contest harkens back to a time in the 9-year history of HardisonInk.com,” Publisher Jeff M. Hardison said, “when we had Traveling Tuesdays. During those summers, we solicited and received photos from people on their summer vacations. So, with a few more qualifiers, people can enter to win in this contest.”
To participate, a person will print a copy of Traveling Goldy.
Click HERE to go to the site where you can click to print Traveling Goldy from any computer connected to a printer.
Then, snap a photo of Goldy, You and A Great View.
HardisonInk.com will share it with the world and the participant will be entered into the drawings.
“I’m thinking there will be videos of Goldy, Inky or Needles the cats selecting the winners,” Hardison said. “Let’s see how it all shakes out.”
Participants must be 18 years or older to participate. One entry per individual or family.
Employees and family of HardisonInk.com are not eligible to win, but can participate for fun.
ALL readers – whether from the Tri-County Area or “beyond” are eligible.
HardisonInk.com is not responsible for any lost or improper entries.
The photographer is solely responsible for having consent of all people visible in the photo to share it with HardisonInk.com.
ENTRY MUST LIST
Names of individuals in photo with Traveling Goldy
The location of the photo.
The date it was taken
Name and contact phone number of the person entering
E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Click on the ad above to be
notified via email about News Alerts.
Sandra Wilcox (left) and Angie Acevedo pause for a moment before singing the HardisonInk.com Jingle on Thursday evening (June 11) in the lobby of The Chief Theater in Chiefland. These two performers accommodated at photographer-videographer as he assured the picture-taking machine (Canon EOS Rebel T6) was in focus. Wilcox and Acevedo are both assistant directors working with Director Rebecca Locklear on the play School House Rock Live Jr. Watch the video below to hear this duet sing the jingle -- in one take! There are photos and a story about the children's performances, which are set for two weekends on the LEISURE PAGE.
Photo by Jeff M. Hardison © July 12, 2019 at 9:39 a.m.
115th Set of Jingle Performers
Sandra Wilcox (left) and Angie Acevedo sing the HardisonInk.com Jingle on Thursday evening (June 11) in the lobby of The Chief Theater in Chiefland. Wilcox and Acevedo are both assistant directors working with Director Rebecca Locklear on the play School House Rock Live Jr. If you want to sing the jingle, just let Jeff M. Hardison know or send an email to email@example.com. He asks people to sing it, too, and some of them agree to sing it. (Thanks people!)
Published July 12, 2019, at 9:39 a.m.
© Video by Jeff M. Hardison, All Rights Reserved