US killer of British tourists appeals against conviction and sentence
Saturday 28 April 2012
A teenager jailed for life for murdering two British tourists in Florida is appealing against his conviction and sentence, it was reported today.
Shawn Tyson was handed two life sentences last month after he was convicted of the murders of James Kouzaris, 24, and James Cooper, 25, in April 16 last year.
Mr Kouzaris, from Northampton, and Mr Cooper, from Hampton Lucy, near Warwick, were shot dead after they drunkenly walked into a rundown public housing estate in Sarasota in the early hours of April 16 last year.
It took a jury just two hours to convict Tyson, who was 16 at the time of the killings, of two counts of first degree murder. The 17-year-old avoided the death penalty because of his age.
But the teenager's public defender Carolyn Schlemmer is appealing against the conviction and sentence, the Herald-Tribune reported.
According to the newspaper Ms Schlemmer has named nearly a dozen grounds for the conviction to be challenged, including the racial makeup of the jury, which included 11 white jurors and one black juror, as well as the decision by Judge Rick De Furia to allow evidence that Tyson threatened people with a gun a week before the murders.
The appeal will be considered by the Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland, Florida, the Herald-Tribune reported.
After Tyson's trial last month, the families of Mr Kouzaris and Mr Cooper described the teenager - who sports a tattoo of the word "savage" on his chest - as "evil" and expressed anger at the fact he was released from juvenile detention a day before the killings.
Tyson had been arrested on April 7 for shooting at a car, but because of an administrative error was released on April 15 to the care of his mother.
Less than 24 hours later he had shot Mr Cooper, a tennis coach, and town planner Mr Kouzaris.
Emergency call 'started off dumb, but got pretty serious'
Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'
Thought you'd seen it all after the Jeremy Paxman interview?
Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent
"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier
Striker's four-month ban for biting an opponent expires on Friday
Argentinian scored 'rabona' wonder goal for Tottenham in Europa League – see it here
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
- 4 Ottawa shootings: Bruce MacKinnon's cartoon is the perfect tribute to soldier Nathan Cirillo
- 5 Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Isis releases first video showing the stoning of woman accused of committing adultery as her father shouts 'don't call me Dad'
This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
FCKH8: YouTube reinstates provocative anti-sexism video showing young girls swearing
Diwali: What is the festival of lights – and how is it celebrated around the world?
Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Attacks on 'Ukip Calypso' show how skewed people’s priorities are
£30000 - £35000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...
£120 - £162 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Secondary Science Teacher Jan 20...
£24000 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: The Job:Te...
£110 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Preston: the job ? We are looking for...