CLEVELAND -- Serial killer Anthony Sowell appeared to be sleeping while a judge sentenced him to death Friday. Sowell closed his eyes shortly after being led into the courtroom of Judge Dick Ambrose, and refused to open them, even when questioned by the judge.
He also refused to open his eyes to look at any of the family members of his victims even as they made powerful emotional statements to the court. Some even offered the convicted serial killer forgiveness.
Shackeled hand and foot, and clothed in an orange prisoner jumpsuit, Sowell sat with his head tilted down and his eyes tightly shut as the sentencing hearing continued.
When Judge Ambrose asked Sowell if he wanted to make a statement, the convicted serial killer did not react at all, keeping his eyes closed and his head down. His attorneys answered for him.
Even when the judge told Sowell he had to sign a certain form, Sowell never moved. His lawyer, John Parker, tried to offer him the form, but the attorney ended up signing it for Sowell.
In the jury box were members of the jury which convicted Sowell on July 22 of more than 80 crimes, and which later recommended a death sentence. Jury members were there voluntarily as observers to the proceedings. They had been discharged from their service after recommending the death penalty earlier this week but wanted to see the case through to its final sentence.
Judge Ambrose set an Oct. 29, 2012 execution date. It is expected to be delayed by an appeal.
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