A jury has convicted a Prescott stockbroker of first-degree murder in the golf-club bludgeoning death of his ex-wife.
The Yavapai County Superior Court jury also convicted Steven DeMocker of six other charges related to the 2008 death of Carolyn Kennedy:
Burglary in the first degree
Two counts of fraudulent schemes and artifices
Conspiracy to commit a fraudulent scheme
Tampering with physical evidence
Contributing to the delinquency of a minor
The verdict was read Friday morning after jurors concluded their deliberations late Thursday.
DeMocker faces a maximum sentence of natural life in prison on the murder conviction.
Prosecutors contend that DeMocker killed Kennedy at her home because he was deep in debt, wanted the insurance payment and didn't want to pay alimony.
DeMocker's defense team told the jury that authorities did not properly investigate Kennedy's death. They tried to deflect attention away from DeMocker and toward a man who lived with Kennedy at the time but who has since died.
Prosecutors acknowledged they had no evidence tying DeMocker to the crime, a confession or eyewitnesses. But they said circumstantial evidence should be enough to send him away to prison for life on first-degree murder and other charges.
DeMocker once floated a story about a "voice in the vent" at the Camp Verde jail in May 2009 who he said told him his ex-wife was "killed by two guys from Phoenix." Investigators concluded that DeMocker made it up.
After Kennedy's death, DeMocker tried to claim the $750,000 life insurance payment but the insurance company wouldn't make the payout directly to him because he was a suspect. The insurer gave the payout to his daughters only after DeMocker disclaimed it.
During the trial, DeMocker's mother, Janice, testified that the money went to defense lawyers in his first trial. That legal team quit, citing a conflict of interest, and the trial abruptly ended in late 2010.
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
Monday, July 28 2014 6:59 PM EDT2014-07-28 22:59:54 GMT
Neighbors struggled to make sense of the shooting deaths of a family of five in which the father was known to many throughout their apartment complex as a friendly maintenance worker.More >
A maintenance worker with financial problems killed his wife and three children with a shotgun, then committed suicide, over the weekend in what state police called one of the worst cases of domestic violence in Maine...More >
They were born just two weeks apart. A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old pit bull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other! Louisiana native Brandi Hodges, 25, has posted photosMore >
A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old Pitbull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other!More >
Tuesday, July 29 2014 12:28 AM EDT2014-07-29 04:28:54 GMT
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne is asking for a temporary restraining order on the office of Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery to keep MCAO from investigating allegations of campaign mismanagement.More >
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne is asking for a temporary restraining order on the office of Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.More >
Monday, July 28 2014 10:46 PM EDT2014-07-29 02:46:51 GMT
A player for the Phoenix Suns who was arrested in May on drunken driving charges had a blood alcohol content level of .222, police reports said.More >
P.J. Tucker was pulled over May 10 after a Scottsdale police officer notice the 2011 Mercedes-Benz Tucker was driving had slowed to 10 mph and ran a stop sign at Camelback and Buckboard, a police report stated.More >