The man convicted in a murder trial that hinged on a paralyzed victim blinking his eyes to identify his shooter was sentenced today to 36 years to life in prison. A jury last month convicted Ricardo Woods, 35, of murder and felonious assault in the death of David Chandler, who was shot in the head and neck on Oct. 28, 2010, as he sat in a car. Woods still maintains his innocence, and his attorney has said there will be an appeal.
Police interviewed Chandler in the hospital, and he was able to communicate only with his eyes. He died about two weeks later. During the trial, jurors viewed the videotaped police interview that prosecutors say showed Chandler blinked three times for "yes" to identify a photo of Woods as his shooter. The defense had tried to block the video, saying Chandler's blinks were inconsistent and unreliable, but a doctor who treated Chandler testified that Chandler was able to communicate clearly about his condition.