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Wydell Jody EVANS





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Argument
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: October 21, 1998
Date of birth: May 19, 1970
Victim profile: Angel Johnson
Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Brevard County, Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on February 15, 2000

Florida Supreme Court


opinion SC00-468

opinion SC05-632 & 05-1974


DC#    113416
DOB:   05/19/70

Eighteenth Judicial Circuit, Brevard County Case # 98-25245
Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Jere Lober
Attorney, Trial: Kenneth Studstill – Private
Attorney, Direct Appeal: Michael Becker – Assistant Public Defender
Attorney, Collateral Appeals:  Richard Kiley & James Viggiano – CCRC-M

Date of Offense: 10/21/98

Date of Sentence: 02/15/00

Circumstances of Offense:

On 10/21/98, two days after being released from prison, Wydell Evans was riding in a car with Angel Johnson, his brother’s 17-year-old girlfriend, Erica Foster, Sammy Hogan, and Lino Odenat. 

Evans was having an argument with Johnson over her alleged unfaithfulness to Evans’ brother.  At some point during the argument, Johnson laughed, to which Evans responded, “You think it’s funny?  You think it’s funny?” 

He then pulled a gun and shot Johnson in the chest.  After the shooting, Odenat tried to exit the vehicle, but Evans told him to get back in the car.  Evans threatened Foster and Hogan not to tell who shot Johnson or he would kill them and their families, before exiting the vehicle.

Foster and Hogan rushed Johnson to the hospital, but she later died of her wounds.  At the hospital, Foster and Hogan were questioned by police, and told police that Johnson was shot during a drug deal by a white man driving a cream-colored car.  They later changed their story and reluctantly identified Evans as the shooter. 

Trial Summary:

11/10/98         Indicted as follows:

Count I            First-Degree Murder

Count II           Kidnapping

Count III          Aggravated Assault

Count IV           Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon

10/25/99          Count IV severed from the other counts of the indictment

11/01/99          Jury returned guilty verdicts on all counts of the indictment

11/03/99          Jury recommended death by a vote of 10-2

02/15/00          Sentenced as follows:

Count I             First-Degree Murder – Death

Count II            Kidnapping – Life Imprisonment   

Count III           Aggravated Assault – 9 years

Case Information

Evans filed a Direct Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court on 03/02/00, citing the following errors: introduction of hearsay testimony; improper comments during State’s closing argument; denial of a judgment of acquittal; improper jury instructions for the Kidnapping charge; improper admission of Evans’ prior presentence investigation reports; and the proportionality of the death penalty in Evans’ case.  On 11/14/02, the FSC affirmed the convictions and sentences.

Evans filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court on 05/28/03 that was denied on 10/06/03.

Evans filed a 3.851 Motion in the Circuit Court on 02/24/04 and amended the motion on 08/31/04.  On 02/14/05, the Circuit Court denied the Motion

Evans filed a 3.851 Motion Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court on 04/14/05 that is pending.

Evans filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with the Florida Supreme Court on 10/26/05 that is pending.



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