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Death sentence set in ninja case

PENSACOLA — A judge has affirmed the death sentence of the convicted ringleader in a deadly ninja-style attack on a Panhandle couple.

In a hearing Thursday afternoon, Judge Nickolas Geeker said he agreed with a jury's October recommendation that Patrick Gonzalez Jr. should be executed for the 2009 slayings of Byrd and Melanie Billings in their west Escambia County home.

Gonzalez was convicted of leading a group of men dressed like ninjas to rob and kill the Florida couple. The couple's nine special-needs children slept or cowered nearby as their parents were killed.

Death sentence set in ninja case 02/17/11 [Last modified: Thursday, February 17, 2011 10:25pm]
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