The state's top court Thursday refused to overturn the death sentence of a man convicted of sexually mutilating and fatally stabbing a 29-year-old St. Petersburg woman. The Florida Supreme Court ruled that Robert Brian Waterhouse should die in the electric chair for the Jan. 2, 1980, murder of Deborah Kammerer. After leaving a Fourth Street bar with Kammerer, Waterhouse beat her, stabbed her more than 30 times, gagged her and dumped her nude body in Tampa Bay. Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Robert Beach has twice sentenced Waterhouse to death. But in his most recent appeal, Waterhouse argued he was poorly represented because his attorney did not deliver a closing argument during the penalty phase of his hearing. The court ruled that defense attorney Larry Hoffman simply was unwilling to make an unethical statement. Waterhouse wanted Hoffman to argue that he might not be guilty. Hoffman refused because Waterhouse's guilt was not at issue at the hearing.
Kyle Waterbury, 2, shares with his mother, Sandy, the petals he found on the ground at Straub Park recently. Mom is teaching her son not to pick the buds from the bushes, and Kyle is an eager student. Today may be a nice day to enjoy the outdoors. The forecast calls for a partly sunny day, with highs in the mid- to upper 70s. And a light east wind may whisk more of those flowers down for Kyle and his brother, Ryan, 3, to give to Mom again.