Robert Bowers perpetrated the deadliest antisemitic attack in U.S. history when he stormed the Tree of Life synagogue in 2018.
Wednesday, August 2, 2023 3:36PM
PITTSBURGH — A jury has reached a decision on whether the man who killed 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue should be sentenced to death or life in prison without parole.
The verdict is expected to be read soon.
Robert Bowers perpetrated the deadliest antisemitic attack in U.S. history when he stormed the Tree of Life synagogue in 2018 and opened fire, killing members of three congregations who had gathered for Sabbath worship and study.
The same federal jury that convicted Bowers in June on 63 criminal counts said Wednesday that it has reached a decision on the sentence. The decision will be announced shortly. The jury must be unanimous in order to impose a death sentence. Otherwise, Bowers will be sentenced to life without parole.
In closing arguments Monday, prosecutors said the 50-year-old truck driver was clearly motivated by religious hatred, reminding jurors that Bowers had spread antisemitic content online before the attack and has since expressed pride in the killings. They urged jurors to impose a death sentence.
Bowers’ lawyers asked jurors to spare his life, asserting that he acted out of a delusional belief that Jewish people were helping to bring about a genocide of white people. They said he has severe mental illness and endured a difficult childhood.
Bowers, who was armed with an AR-15 rifle and other weapons, also shot and wounded seven people, including five responding police officers.
The jury began deliberating around 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.
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https://abc7ny.com/pittsburgh-synagogue-shooting-robert-bowers-death-penalty-verdict-tree-of-life-2018-mass/13587070/ Jury reaches decision on death penalty or life in prison for Pittsburgh synagogue gunman Robert Bowers