FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A jury will begin deliberating Wednesday the fate of a Lauderhill man who was convicted of murder and robbery.
A jury found suspected gang member James Herard, 24, guilty, on May 16th, for 18 charges which included murder, racketeering and robbery.
That same jury was at his sentencing on Tuesday, June 3rd to hear testimony and decide whether he should be put to death.
Before the life or death debate began, Herard argued with the judge over whether to change from his jail garb into a suit and tie.
He walked into the courtroom with his jail clothes then got upset because he said no one had given him the option to change into regular clothes.
“You refuse to get dressed?” asked the judge.
“I refuse to look like a fool,” Herard answered.
The judge told him he could go back and change.
Once he was changed and was back in the courtroom, everyone was asked to leave the room so he could speak with his family.
The Prosecutors tried to underscore why Herard deserved the death penalty by showing the jury clips from a police interrogation in which Herard said, “I turned to savage mode….somebody would have to hold me down going out in the street like,” he said while doing the motions of shooting an automatic weapon.
Investigators ask in the clip, You shot a lot of people in a short amount of time. How do you deal with it?
Herard responded, “It’s like sex to me.”
The investigator asked, ” You enjoy it?”
Herard responded with a ,”Yeah.”
During his trial, prosecutors were seeking the death penalty against Herard for for the murder of 56-year-old Kiem Huynh at a Tamarac Dunkin Donuts on November 27th, 2008 and the murder of Eric Jean-Pierre. Huynh died after being shot in the back during the Thanksgiving Day robbery in 2008. Jean-Pierre was shot in the face. Herard is accused of ordering the killing while driving with a fellow gang member.
Herard, described as the ringleader of a gang of violent criminals, was sentenced in August 2011 to nine life terms for the robbery of a Delray Beach Dunkin Donuts just one day before he shot and killed Huynh. During the Delray Beach crime, four customers were shot, two in the face. Nobody died.
Herard is also accused of taking part in the robberies of three Broward Dunkin Donuts and a 7-11.
During his trial, Herard was known for barking at a judge and laughing right after a police interrogation.
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