Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Valessa Robinson, convicted in mother's murder, released from prison

Valessa Robinson, now 30, was sentenced to 20 years.

Valessa Robinson, now 30, was sentenced to 20 years.

Valessa Robinson, who was a 15-year-old when she helped murder her own mother, was released from state prison early Friday.

Department of Corrections officials confirmed that Robinson was let out of Homestead Correctional Institution shortly after midnight, having reached the end of her third-degree murder sentence for the 1998 death of Vicki Robinson, a Tampa Realtor.

Robinson was killed in her Carrollwood home. At the time, she was struggling to get control of her daughter, who was acting out and dating Adam Davis, a 19-year-old with a criminal past.

The night of the murder, Valessa, Davis and another friend, Jon Whispel, went to a Denny's restaurant and hatched the plan to kill Valessa's mom. According to state records, the three stole Vicki Robinson's van and tried to buy heroin. Davis bought a syringe, and back at the house put Vicki Robinson in a sleeper hold and injected her with bleach. When that didn't kill her, he stabbed her multiple times.

Six days after Vicki Robinson disappeared, the three youths were arrested in a high-speed chase in Texas. Vicki Robinson's body was found in a garbage can in a woods near her home.

In 2000, a Hillsborough judge sentenced Valessa Robinson to 20 years in prison for the killing, plus grand theft of the van.

So why is she being released now?

Robinson was not expected to get out of prison until 2015. Florida law mandates that inmates serve at least 85 percent of their sentences before they are eligible for release.

But earlier this year, her release was moved up to February. State corrections officials say release dates can change for several reasons. Robinson received credit for the time she served in jail before her conviction, and she earned 1,146 days of gain time for good behavior.

Robinson has been disciplined in prison over the years, but also took classes. She was enrolled in ArtSpring, a program that uses arts-based education to promote self-betterment. In the program, she served as a mentor and intern instructor. She also was enrolled in two separate post-prison transition programs.

Davis is on death row. Whispel was sentenced to 25 years and is currently scheduled to be released in 2020.

Valessa Robinson registered an address in Ocean Springs, Miss., with the Department of Corrections, where she has stated she will live upon her release from prison. The address is the home of family members.

.Fast facts


Valessa Robinson had a list of three approved visitors. They were:

• Charles Robinson, her father

• Michelle Robinson, her sister

• Venessa Robinson, her stepmother

Where did she serve her time?

Robinson's initial commitment was in June 2000 at Lowell Correctional Institution, near Ocala. She was transferred in October 2000 to Homestead Correctional Institution, south of Miami, where she lived for the next five years. From there, she was housed for varying lengths of time at Homestead, Gadsden Correctional Facility, and Hernando Correctional Institution. She returned to the Lowell Work Camp in March 2012 and remained there until July 2013, when she returned to Homestead.

Each prison has various types of housing units. Homestead, where Robinson served the bulk of her time, consists entirely of open bay and room housing units (no cells).

Source: Florida Department of Corrections

Valessa Robinson, convicted in mother's murder, released from prison 12/06/13 [Last modified: Friday, December 6, 2013 9:29pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Review / photos: Sunset Music Festival wraps up with Above and Beyond, more at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa


    The first numbers trickled in on Sunday, and they didn't look great.

    Louis the Child performed at the Sunset Music Festival at Raymond James Stadium on May 28, 2017.
  2. Philippines forces make gains in city under siege by ISIS-linked militants

    MARAWI, Philippines — Philippine forces say they now control most of a southern city where militants linked to the Islamic State group launched a bloody siege nearly a week ago.

  3. Rays exhausted but happy after 15-inning win over Twins (w/video)

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Before the Rays eventually won Sunday's 6½-hour, 15-inning marathon against the Twins 8-6, they did plenty to lose it. And we need to get that out of the way first.

    The Rays’ Evan Longoria enjoys a laugh after scoring, barely, to tie it in the ninth on Steven Souza Jr.’s two-out single.
  4. Tom Jones' Two Cents: ABC's Indy 500 coverage is stellar again

    TV and Radio

    Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Takuma Sato left, celebrates after winning the Indianapolis 500 as Helio Castroneves is a little late passing him. ABC’s coverage of the race is stellar throughout, with plenty of extras but no fake drama.
  5. Takuma Sato surprise winner of wreck-filled Indy 500

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Takuma Sato, a journeyman driver, became the first Japanese winner of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday when he held off three-time champion Helio Castroneves in a 230-mph wheel-rubbing duel to the finish.

    Scott Dixon’s car goes over the top of Jay Howard, soaring so high that Helio Castroneves drove under it while it was airborne. Stunningly, there were no serious injuries.