Roberts Convicted in Deputy Slayings - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

10/20/03

Roberts Convicted in Deputy Slayings

Roberts in court this weekend. Roberts in court this weekend.

There's been a guilty verdict in the Tyree Roberts murder trial. A jury came down with the decision just before noon today. Roberts defended himself in the case, and yesterday pleaded his case to the jury for three hours during closing arguments.

Roberts says the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office planted evidence to frame him for the murders of LCpl. Dana Tate and Cpl. AJ Coursen. They were killed while responding to a domestic disturbance at Roberts' house in January 2002. He insisted the evidence presented did not prove he killed the deputies, but solicitor Randolph Murdaugh wrapped up his case by reminding the jury of evidence including the murder weapon, the magazine from that rifle containing Roberts' thumb print, and blood from the murder scene matched the defendant's DNA.

The sentencing phase was scheduled to start 24 hours after the verdict, but Roberts waived that right and a sentencing hearing is already underway.

Reported by: Jaime Dailey, jdailey@wtoc.com

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