MIAMI (AP) — A judge has imposed the death penalty on a man convicted in the 2002 abduction of a young South Florida couple and slaying of the teenage woman.
Circuit Judge William Thomas agreed Thursday with a jury’s recommendation that 34-year-old Joel Lebron should die.
Prosecutors said Lebron was the leader of a group of men who abducted 17-year-old Nelson Portobanco and 18-year-old Ana Maria Angel as they were walking back to their car on South Beach. The couple was forced into a pickup truck.
The men gang-raped Angel, and Portobanco was stabbed and left for dead, but survived. Angel was fatally shot alongside an Interstate 95 retaining wall in Palm Beach County.
The other four men have also been convicted. One man’s death sentence was tossed by the state Supreme Court.