Crime Suspect found guilty of killing prominent Florida storm chaser
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A man who has repeatedly denied playing a role in the death of a beloved Florida storm chaser was found guilty on all counts raised against him in connection with the 2017 robbery and murder.
Sarah Nicholson, who was a certified storm chaser for the Weather Channel, came home the night of Oct. 29, 2017 to find three men rifling through her things. She immediately confronted the group but she failed to fight them off.
Nicholson was brutally beaten and stabbed to death before the suspects set her Bonita Springs house ablaze and then fled the scene. Authorities went on to arrest Cristian Dilan and Raymond Gomez, two houseguests who Nicholson recently tried to boot.
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During his five-day trial, which kicked off last week, Dilan claimed he never touched 34-year-old Nicholson and that he just entered the house and took items he was instructed to take, according to the. He said he had no knowledge of the nefarious plot and showed up at the residence because he believed he was helping an acquiantance move.
Prosecutors however pointed to evidence suggesting otherwise, including the presence of Nicholson’s blood in Dilan’s vehicle.
“The defendant participated actively in these crimes and I ask that you find him guilty as charged,” Assistant State Attorney Brenda Wade said.
The jury agreed and found Dilan guilty on charges including grand theft, burglary, robbery, tampering with physical evidence and second-degree murder. He was remanded to jail without bond and has a sentencing scheduled for August.
Gomez earlier this year pleaded not guilty to the murder and and is in jail without bond. He faces trial later this year.
Although a third man was allegedly at the scene, he has not been charged.
NRA Celebrates 25 'Bad Gun Control Bills' Killed in Florida Amid Rise in Violent Crime .
"Remember this as the scourge of gun violence continues to grow in Florida and across the country," one Florida state representative responded."As we celebrate passage of three (3) pro-gun bills in the 2021 Florida Legislative Session, we should also be celebrating the fact that 25 very bad gun control bills were killed (10 House Bills & 15 Senate Bills) without ever getting to the House or Senate floor," Marion Hammer, the gun-rights group's longtime Florida lobbyist, said in a statement to members.