The state no longer will seek the death penalty against the man found guilty of murdering Kantral Brooks and Esther Deneus.
Trey Nonnombre, 20, was found guilty on Thursday of two counts of first-degree murder and armed home invasion.
Brooks and Deneus were shot dead just before 4 a.m. on July 9, 2015, in the home they shared in the 3900 block of Southern Parkway in Bradenton. The break-in triggered the home’s security alarm system, and when Bradenton police officers arrived moments later, they found the couple had been shot.
Police also found their five children — who were between the ages of 1 and 11 — standing together and looking scared.
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Assistant State Attorney Art Brown said Monday the state no longer would be seeking the death penalty, based on the jury’s findings on the verdict form regarding whether Nonnombre had carried and discharged a firearm.
Under Florida’s new death penalty laws, the jury has to find at least one aggravating circumstance beyond a reasonable doubt that outweighs any established mitigating circumstances. Mitigating circumstances have to be established by the greater weight of the evidence.
The verdict in Nonnombre’s case came after nearly 16 hours of deliberations by the jury of 12.
Among those who testified against Nonnombre was his former co-defendant Terez Jones. In May, Jones plead guilty to two counts of second-degree murder and one count of armed burglary. Helping to avoid the death penalty or life in prison, Jones had to testify truthfully against Nonnomber and a third co-defendant, Jimmie McNear.
McNear, 20, is still facing the identical charges of two counts of first-degree murder and armed home invasion. He is set to stand trial during the five-week trial period that begins Oct. 16.