Saturday, December 16, 2017
News Roundup

Former Jabil executive Patrick Evans sentenced to die for 2008 double murder

In his own corporate constellation, Patrick A. Evans was a rising star, a vice president at Jabil Circuit whose job took him to Singapore and Hong Kong and afforded him a million-dollar home on St. Pete Beach.

On Friday, Evans, 45, still looked the part of the corporate executive, dressed in a gray suit and thin, wire-framed glasses. But his life could not have been more of a contrast.

He stood before Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Richard Luce, waiting to hear what his punishment would be for killing his wife and her male companion in 2008.

Evans showed no emotion as Luce sentenced him to death by lethal injection, describing the murders as "premeditated … without any provocation."

"In short, Patrick Evans, you executed two people," the judge said.

Last November, a jury found Evans guilty of the two murders and recommended that he be executed. Under Florida law, the final sentence is imposed by a judge, who must give the jury's recommendation great weight.

On Friday, Luce said that although Evans had no previous criminal record and had comported himself well in jail these last two years, the violence of the crime and the forethought that went into it far outweighed any mitigating factors.

"There's no joy in Mudville for anyone in the courtroom, including me," Luce said, referencing the poem Casey at the Bat about an arrogant baseball player who costs his team the game.

Speaking after the sentencing, Elizabeth Evans' father, Julian Weingarten, said the family approved of the punishment.

"It's been 31/2 years and justice has finally been done and we're grateful that it's over," he said.

Evans' lawyer, David Parry, said he plans to appeal the case and will challenge the use of certain evidence, including a 911 call that recorded Elizabeth Evans pleading with a man named "Rick" right before her death.

Much of the state's case centered on that call, which was made from Elizabeth Evans' Gulfport condominium on Dec. 20, 2008, the night prosecutors said Patrick Evans crept into the her home and found her in the master bedroom, undressed, with a man named Jerry Taylor. Patrick Evans shot both of them in the neck, first Taylor and then Elizabeth, who can be heard screaming for help on the recording.

Patrick Evans had filed for divorce in April 2008, then changed his mind. But months later, Elizabeth Evans filed her own petition, which was winding its way through the legal system when she was killed. Her daughter from a previous marriage, Molly Rhoades, now 21, was a student at St. Petersburg Catholic High School at the time, and testified that Patrick Evans went by "Rick" and owned a handgun.

Evans' lawyer, David Parry, said his client did not appear upset in court because he is already focused on his appeal.

"He's positive in regards to his appeal," Parry said. "It's like the end of the first quarter for him and the start of the second."

Evans' mother, Marci Evans, and brother were in the courtroom, but declined to speak with a reporter after the verdict.

Patrick Evans offered them a brief, tight smile as he was taken away.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly identified defense attorney David Parry.

 
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