State seeks death penalty after Okeechobee mother of 4 killed in December

Posted at 5:50 PM, Feb 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-24 05:51:15-05

A man investigators say raped and murdered a young mother of four in Okeechobee County could get the death penalty.

Prosecutors announced they will ask for death in the case of 21-year-old Christopher Shows in the December death of Amanda Suarez.

Leah Suarez, Amanda’s mother-in-law, said her focus right now is on her son and her four grandchildren and keeping Amanda's legacy alive.

Amanda’s family now knows her alleged killer will face the death penalty.

“We're struggling with that decision but we don't struggle at all in supporting our son with what his wishes are,” said Suarez.

Her son is now a single father to four young children. “They're struggling every day,” said Suarez, who’s helping to raise the children. “They’re still having temper tantrums and fits and crying. It's hard to sometimes distinguish what's a normal 2-year-old fit or temper tantrum versus what the trauma is.”

Prosecutor Ashley Albright outlined the reasons for seeking the maximum penalty. “One is that it was committed during the course of a burglary, the second is it was committed in what we would call a cold, calculated and premeditated manner,” he explained. “This is one of the worst of the worst cases, absolutely.”

But Shows’ attorney, Stanley Glenn, disagreed. “The death penalty is supposed to be for the most horrific, most egregious and most depraved of homicides,” explained Glenn. “This case just simply is not that.”

Suarez said about Shows, “Our wish as grandparents is that we want to make sure he's never released.”

No trial date is set yet.