Jury sentences Pittsburgh synagogue gunman to death penalty

Judge Robert Colville will formally rule in court today.

Image Credit: AP/Matt Rourke

Judge Robert Colville formally sentenced Robert Bowers to death on Thursday. After victim impact statements, the judge sentenced Bowers to death on 22 capital counts, 37 life sentences and 20 years each on four additional count, CNN reported.

“Your sick, vile, despicable actions have totally erased you from humanity and society forever,” Mark Simon, whose parents were killed in the deadly attack at the synagogue, said.

A jury in the case against Robert Bowers, 50, the gunman who killed 11 people at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, decided a death sentence should be imposed for his attacks. The jury found Bowers guilty on 63 charges, including hate crimes and civil rights offenses, in the deadliest antisemitic attack in the country’s history and all 12 jurors agreed to impose the death penalty.

Bowers roamed the halls and chapels of the Tree of Life synagogue while people gathered for Shabbat services on October 27, 2018 and opened fire killing brothers David and Cecil Rosenthal, 54 and 59; Richard Gottfried, 65; Jerry Robinowitz, 66; Irving Younger, 69′ Daniel Stein, 71; Joyce Fienberg, 75; husband and wife Bernice and Sylvan Simon, 84 and 86; Melvin Wax, 87; and Rose Mallinger, 97.

The defense team argued that Bowers “showed particular hatred towards immigrants and Jews on right-wing forums,” on a conservative talk show radio where he worked, Causes.com reported. Bowers’ team did not dispute the facts of the attacks, but rather argued that he was mentally ill and the shootings were fueled by “delusional beliefs.”

Judge Robert Colville will formally rule in court today. There will also be an opportunity for victim impact statements before sentencing is handed down.


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