A Florida man who shot a gay couple to death in 2010 was captured flicking off the victims’ families shortly after being condemned to death.
Steven Adams and Kevin Powell reportedly invited Peter Avsenew, 33, into their home after responding to a post on Craigslist appearing to suggest a sexual encounter for money. The rendezvous ended with Powell and Adams being found shot to death in their Wilton Manors home and Avsenew taking off with their credit cards and car, according to WPLG.
WQAM reports that Avsenew claimed that he found the couple dead and fled the home in fear for his life. He claims that he didn’t call police because he had solicited a paid sexual encounter as an escort. Instead of calling 911, he went to his mother’s home. She became suspicious and called police.
A Broward jury convicted Avsenew of two counts of first-degree murder in November. Following the conviction, he fired his lawyers and represented himself during the penalty phase of the trial, according to the news station.
“I have no regrets in my life and I am proud of every decision I ever made. Nobody knows what happened that day, everyone can speculate, you would need an Ouija board for that,” Avsenew told the jury during sentencing.
The jury reportedly took two hours to sentence the convicted killer to death. Not only did he show no sign of remorse, but the Sun-Sentinel reported that he gave the middle finger to one of the victim’s families as jurors exited the courtroom.
Jurors who saw the vulgar gesture alerted the bailiff, who informed Judge Ilona Holmes. Holmes, in turn, warned the defendant that his conduct could be used against him.
“It wasn’t to the jury,” he said.
“It was to the family.”
Avsenew has since hired an attorney, Arthur Marchetta, who is expected to show evidence that Avsenew didn’t present to the jury which could have spared him the death penalty. Prosecutors, Avsenew, and his recently-hired representation are due back in court on January 26 to schedule additional hearings–which could include another sentencing hearing.
[Featured Image: Peter Avsenew/WPLG video screenshot]