Death penalty looms for convicted murderer

The defense team for the man convicted of ordering the 1999 killing of a young boy and his mother rested its case in the death penalty hearing Friday.

Over the past four weeks, jurors have heard from numerous witnesses, looked at photos of the victims and crime scene and heard emotional testimony from family members. The prosecution started to make its rebuttal Friday and will continue on Tuesday. Closing arguments are expected Wednesday, and then the jury must determine if Russell Peeler will get the death penalty for his crimes.

Peeler was convicted in 2000 of ordering the killing of 8-year-old BJ Brown and his mother Karen Clarke in 1999 in their Bridgeport home. Brown was supposed to testify against Peeler in a murder trial.

Peeler's 17-year-old daughter took the stand Friday morning. She emphasized how important it is to be able to visit her father and write him letters. She called her dad her spirit, saying he's everything to her.

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