Editor’s note: This story is continuing coverage of the murder trial of Anne Maxin Patton. If you are unfamiliar with the case, you may want to read this story first.
January 19th, 2013 (InsideCostaRica.com) Prosecutors and the District Attorney are asking for a 25-year prison sentence for U.S. citizen, Anne Maxine Patton, accused of killing husband, John Felix Bender in 2010 in the couple’s home located in Florida de Baru, Perez Zeledon.
Since his death, Patton has continuously insisted that her husband’s death was a suicide gone wrong.
Yesterday, during closing arguments, and based on expert testimony, prosecutor Fernando Oses discredited the defendant’s version of the events. In closing arguments that lasted nearly four hours, he explained his conclusion to the court – that the only person that could have killed Bender, according to evidence provided during this week’s trial, was the man’s wife, Anne Maxine Patton.
He stated that due to the position in which the body was found and because of the trajectory of the bullet, it was impossible for the victim to have killed himself. Witnesses from the Judicial Investigation Organization, as well as a forensic doctor, testified that the evidence in the cause clearly indicates that Bender was murdered.
“Anne took advantage of the fact that he was sleeping, she approached the man from the back part of his body […] [she] fired the gun once, causing the injury that caused his death,” said the DA.
“She had a license to carry weapons; that means that she was capable of using them,” Oses added. Patton had previously claimed that a neurological illness prevents her from being able to handle a firearm.
Investigators found no gunpowder residue on the victim’s hands, which would have been expected had he fired the weapon. However, gunpowder residue was also not found on the suspect’s hands, though sources close to the investigation believe Patton could have worn gloves our washed her hands after the shooting.
Fabio Oconitrillo, Patton’s attorney, stated that there were many abnormalities in the prosecutor’s investigation.
The court asked the defendant if she would like to make a final statement, to which she responded: “I did not kill John, I am innocent. I have gone through 3 years of hell, but I feel I have been listened to, protected by the judicial system.”
Patton’s guilt will be decided Monday, January 21st, at 11:30 am in courtroom number 3 in the Perez Zeledon Court.