The Florida Supreme Court has refused to halt next weeks scheduled execution of 45-year-old Martin (Michoel Yechiel) Edward Grossman, a Jewish inmate, convicted of murdering a Pinellas County wildlife officer in 1984.
According to a report by the Associated Press, the justices Monday rejected claims from Grossman that he wasn’t given a fair chance to prove his trial lawyer had been ineffective nor allowed to present certain mitigating evidence against a death sentence.
The high court also ruled he was premature in arguing that he may be mentally incompetent. An insanity claim must first go to Gov. Charlie Crist for a ruling before it can be appealed.
The execution is set for Feb. 16.
Grossman was 19 years old when he and a friend went to a wooded area in Pinellas County on Dec. 13, 1984 to shoot a stolen handgun.
26-year-old Florida Wildlife Officer Margaret Park interrupted them and Grossman pleaded with her not to report him for having the gun and being outside Pasco County, both of which were violations of his probation for burglary.
Grossman struck Park on the back of the head when she tried to radio for help and his accomplice beat her.
Grossman, who was a foot taller and 100 pounds heavier than Park, wrestled her gun away from her and shot her in the back of the head.
(Dov Gordon – YWN)