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Sentencing underway for convicted child killer Granville Ritchie

Posted at 6:03 PM, Sep 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-26 18:06:55-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Granville Ritchie was found guilty of sexually battering and murdering 9-year-old Felicia Williams in May of 2014.

Now, the same jury who found Ritchie guilty of first-degree murder, sexual battery and child abuse are now tasked with deciding his punishment.

Ritchie's lawyer argues his brain scans show "abnormalities" and did not have a serious criminal record before he killed Williams.

The jury must be unanimous in order to sentence Ritchie to death. Otherwise, he will spend the rest of his life in prison.

RELATED: Trial begins for man accused of raping, killing Tampa 9-year-old

Family friend Eboni Wiley brought Williams to Ritchie’s apartment on May 16, 2014. She testified that she left the little girl alone with him to go buy marijuana.

When she came back, she says Williams was gone.

Wiley testified that Ritchie told her he let the child walk to CVS to buy candy, but there was no sign of her there.

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Prosecutors say evidence shows Ritchie strangled Felicia and used a suitcase to dispose of her body.

“There’s not one particle of evidence that points in any other direction, then directly at that table and that defendant," said Harmon.

Ritchie did not take the stand to testify in his own defense. His attorney told the jury that’s not a sign of guilt.

He also said the state did not prove that Ritchie is Felicia’s killer.

“There’s no sign of a struggle in that apartment. There’s no DNA evidence left by Felicia Williams that you would expect if there is a struggle in that apartment," said Bjorn Brunvand.

As closing arguments came to an end, Ritchie’s attorney told him to stand up. Then told the jury, “he is now in your hands.”