BRADENTON, Fla. - A jury recommended Delmer Smith be put to death for the 2009 murder of Kathleen Briles.
Dr. James Briles had told the jury about the wonderful life he shared with his wife Kathleen and how three years ago, it was all taken away.
"My heart is broken, my love is lost, and these are not recoverable," Briles said, reading for a prepared statement.
On April 3, 2009, Dr. Briles came home to find Kathleen tied up and bludgeoned to death in their Terra Ciea home.
Delmer Smith was found guilty of the murder last week.
Dr. Briles testified in that trial, and today the grieving husband was back on the stand as the jury decided between a life sentence and the death penalty.
"The biggest tragedy is that her beautiful children will never again be able to share their life with Kathleen," said Briles. One of the jurors wiped tears from her eyes as he read.
Smith, who is a suspect in several home invasions and another murder, continued to show no emotion as his relatives tried to save his life
One of his nieces talked about how her uncle was a positive influence and helped keep her out of trouble.
"He's still in my prayers. Yes I do love him very much," said Christiana Smith.
Smith is already in prison on a life sentence for a home invasion in Sarasota. That victim survived the attack and testified for the state today.
The defense brought up a neuropsychologist who said Smith has brain damage and had been plagued by many issues for his entire life.
Even though the jury recommended the death sentence, Judge Peter Dubensky will make the final decision, likely later in the week.
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Plenty of sunshine with high humidity, but low chances for an afternoon shower or storm inland.