USA - Florida. Federal. A federal judge has found that Estaben Santiago competent to enter a guilty plea

28 May 2018 :

A federal district court judge in Florida has found that Estaben Santiago is competent to enter a guilty plea and accepted the agreement reached between federal prosecutors and the defense sparing Santiago the death penalty in exchange for his pleading guilty to five counts of murder. U.S. District Judge Beth Bloom asked Santiago why he did what he did. Santiago initially told the FBI after the shooting that he believed he was under some form of government mind control, before switching to unfounded claims he acted in support of the Islamic State extremist group. "Um, I don't know. I wasn't really thinking about it at the moment," he told the judge Wednesday. "A lot of things were going on in my mind. Messages." The plea deal was struck after prosecutors announced they wouldn't seek the death penalty. Instead, Santiago agreed to a life prison sentence plus 120 years. The sentence will be officially imposed in August.


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