|Judge sentences convicted murderer Joel Lebron convicted of killing Ana Maria Angel in 2002|
January 31, 2013
Good about fucking time.
A judge sentenced Joel Lebron, who was convicted of kidnapping, raping, and murdering Ana Maria Angel in 2002, to death.
Judge William Thomas choked up as he made the ruling Thursday, Local 10's Glenna Milberg reported.
Jurors found Lebron guilty of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, sexual battery and sexual battery on Sept. 28.
Those same jurors recommended the death penalty for Lebron, voting 9-3.
According to investigators, in the spring of 2002, Angel, 18, was out celebrating an anniversary with Nelson Portobanco, her boyfriend at the time, when five people kidnapped them and forced them into their truck at gunpoint.
As they rode north to Orlando where the defendants where from, prosecutors said Angel was repeatedly raped and Nelson was beaten. Portobanco was eventually thrown out of the truck along Interstate 95 and left for dead.
The five are accused of killing Angel execution-style at the side of I-95 near Boca Raton to keep her from identifying them. Police said Lebron, now 33, was the gunman.
During sentencing, defense attorneys argued a childhood car crash resulted in a brain injury for Lebron, but Thomas dismissed that as a mitigating factor.
Both Angel's mother and Portobanco attended the sentencing.
Prior to Lebron's conviction, three of the five defendants had already been convicted. Two were sentenced to life in prison; one is awaiting a second sentencing hearing after his death penalty sentence was overturned.