LEE COUNTY, Fla. — There were some tense moments in a Florida courtroom Monday when a convicted murderer, who was hoping for a new trial, threw an elbow at his own lawyer.
Joseph Zieler was led into a Lee County courtroom when he appeared to motion to a member of his defense team. He then threw a sharp elbow into the lawyer's forehead.
Two bailiffs immediately wrestled Zieler to the floor and the lawyer told the judge he was OK.
Zieler was convicted in the 1990 killing of Robin Cornell, 11, and her babysitter, Lisa Story, 32, in Cape Coral. He could be sentenced to death for the crimes.
He was hoping to get a new trial, but a judge dismissed the motion and did not overturn the conviction.
Judge Robert Banning later sentenced Zieler to death. A jury had already voted in favor of Zieler receiving the death penalty.
The judge also denied Zieler's motion for a new trial and decided not to overturn his conviction.