Face-Biting Murder Suspect Won't Face Death

Prosecutor says decision comes after 'careful review of the case'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 18, 2017 10:56 AM CDT
Face-Biting Murder Suspect Won't Face Death
Austin Harrouff is transported to the Martin County Jail from St. Mary's Hospital in Florida on Oct. 3, 2016.   (Richard Graulich/Palm Beach Post via AP)

Austin Harrouff, the Florida man accused of eating the face of one of his two alleged murder victims during what his lawyer calls "a psychological break," will not face the death penalty if convicted. Assistant state attorney Jeff Hendriks says the decision not to seek the death penalty comes after "careful review of the case," per USA Today.

A legal analyst tells WPTV that proving premeditation is tough in cases with a "mental health defense." The state now requires that jurors are unanimous in their choice to recommend death. Harrouff, 20—also charged with attempted murder in connection with the events of Aug. 15, 2016—previously told Dr. Phil he didn't deserve to die and "never wanted to hurt anybody." He had no drugs in his system on the night he allegedly killed John Stevens III, 59, and Michelle Mishcon, 53, . (Read more murder stories.)

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