LEE COUNTY –
The man convicted and sentenced to death for killing a Riverdale High School band director in 1996 was in court Tuesday.
Kevin Foster, 33, says his attorneys didn’t do enough during his trial for the murder of Mark Schwebes and wants his death sentence vacated.
The former leader of the “Lords of Chaos” claims he has an organic brain disorder and his attorneys didn’t bring that up during trial.
“Ideally we’d like to have a new trial but if we don’t get that a new penalty phase would be good,” said Terri Backhus, Foster’s attorney.
That means Foster could get off death row.
During the morning session of the postconviction evidentiary hearing, Roberta Harsh testified. She was an investigator for the public defender’s office and assistant to Foster’s attorneys during the trial.
James Wooten, another employee of the public defender’s office during Foster’s trial, testified Foster was considered a “good kid gone bad.”
He said there was never any indication in his school records that Foster had mental issues.
Wooten is now serving a 15 year sentence for robbery.
The victim’s sister sat in the front row and watched as witness after witness recounted their role in the case, including one of Foster’s original attorneys, who testified during the afternoon session.
“We spent a lot of time in the guilt phase,” said Marquin Rinard.
Foster’s half sister spent an hour on the stand talking about their childhood, their role models and her brother’s numerous head injuries.
His attorneys are using that testimony to show Foster has a brain disorder.
“Those things cause brain injuries that may not manifest at that time but as you get further down the road it has consequences on impulse control,” said Backhus.
The state spent little time cross examining each witness.
Testimony is expected to wrap up Friday.
By Lindsay Kruger
- Defense team for Lords of Chaos’ Foster testifies at hearing (barefootpreachr.org)
- Proceedings end for day in Lords of Chaos ringleader Foster’s appeal hearing (barefootpreachr.org)