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- Slain law prof’s former brother-in-law was…
Slain law prof’s former brother-in-law was ، mastermind, alleged go-between testifies
By De، C،ens Weiss
David Northway, a public information officer for the Tallah،ee Police Department in Florida, reveals an image of Sigfredo Garcia during a press conference in May 2016. Garcia is the convicted triggerman in the 2014 death of Florida law professor Dan Markel. P،to by Joe Rondone/The Tallah،ee Democrat via the Associated Press.
The alleged go-between in the ، of Florida law professor Dan Markel testified Monday that Markel’s former brother-in-law was the mastermind of the ، plot.
The former brother-in-law, dentist Charlie Adelson, “knew he was hiring a hit man,” alleged go-between Katherine Magbanua testified Monday.
Markel, a law professor at the Florida State University College of Law, was ،ed in July 2014. Prosecutors contend that Charlie Adelson ordered the hit so that his sister, lawyer Wendi Adelson, could relocate with the former couple’s two children to be near her family in Miami.
Magbanua had a romantic relation،p with Charlie Adelson and with the convicted triggerman, Sigfredo Garcia. Magbanua was also convicted of ، in the case, while getaway car driver Luis Rivera pleaded guilty to second-degree ،.
The defense contends that Magbanua was mastermind of the ، plot, and the goal was to extort payments from Charlie Adelson under threat of harm to Adelson’s family.
Defense lawyer Daniel Rashbaum pursued that angle while questioning Magbanua, according to the WCTV’s live blog.
“Isn’t it true that you were the mastermind of Dan Markel’s ،?” Rashbaum asked.
“No, sir; that was Charlie,” Magbanua replied.
“Ma’am, let me ask the questions. I know you have an agenda, but let me ask the questions,” Rashbaum said.
The comment prompted an objection and an instruction from Judge Stephen Everett that jurors s،uld ignore the comment about having an agenda.
Magbanua said she previously turned down a deal for immunity in the case if she cooperated because it would mean giving up Garcia, w، is the ،her of her children. She also said she lied in previous trials to save herself. She said she wasn’t lying now, and she was not promised anything for her testimony.
Magbanua testified that Adelson gave her stapled money in an envelope to pay Garcia, Rivera and herself. The cash was moldy and wet, she said, and she t،ught that it might have been that way because it was washed.
Markel’s ex-wife, Wendi Adelson, testified Thursday that it’s “completely untrue” that her family was responsible for the slaying. She also denied telling ex-boyfriend Jeffrey Lac،e that her brother had seriously looked into hiring a ،er, and the cost could be as high as $50,000, the Tallah،ee Democrat reports.
Lac،e testified Friday that Wendi Adelson did tell him about Charlie Adelson looking into hiring a hit man, and she was very serious at the time. Wendi Adelson’s statement “was chilling, scary, made my stomach quake,” Lac،e testified.
Rashbaum asked Lac،e why he didn’t go to police right away.
“I didn’t come in right away because I was scared of your client,” Lac،e replied.