SANTA ROSA COUNTY — Thomas H. Fletcher, already serving a life sentence for the 1994 murder of a Broward County drug dealer, has waived his right to have a jury decide whether he should be put to death for a second homicide.
At a Thursday hearing, Fletcher admitted to killing Kenneth Jeff Davis in September of 2018 while both men were inmates at the Blackwater Correctional Institution, a news release from the First Judicial Circuit State Attorneys Office said.
Following the plea, Circuit Judge Scott Duncan adjudicated Fletcher guilty of first degree murder, a charge for which the State Attorneys Office had announced its intention to seek the death penalty, the release said.
When Fletcher waived his right to have a jury hear the penalty phase of the trial, during which attorneys on either side of the case argue for and against putting the accused to death, Duncan ruled that he would preside over that phase and ordered a comprehensive pre-sentence investigation be conducted, the news release said.
A hearing date of Oct, 24 was set to determine when the penalty phase in the case would begin, it said.
Davis was 33 at the time of his death. He was serving a sentence of 25 years for trying to kill his ex-wife and her boyfriend with an explosive device in Walton County in 2015.
Fletcher’s original sentence was on charges of murder, robbery and trafficking cocaine. He was convicted of killing his drug dealer during an attempted robbery.