Local News

Closing Arguments Underway in Golphin Brothers Trial

Posted May 10, 1998

— Closing arguments in the Golphin brothers sentencing trial began earlier today. The two face possible death sentences for their killing of two law enforcement officers.

Attorneys for Tilmon Golphin say his abusive childhood is not justification for killing Trooper Ed Lowry and Deputy David Hathcock. But they say it is a mitigating factor that should be considered when the jury makes it's decision. Prosecutors tell the jury they expect them to vote for death because the evidence is so bad.

The jury will be asked to consider 9 aggravating and 4 mitigating circumstances. Courthouse officials say this trial represents the most aggravating factors of any defendants convicted of first degree murder in recent memory.

But it's the mitigating circumstances Tilmon Golphin's attorney, Jim Parish, says is enough for a life in prison without parole punishment.

Listen toauorReal Audiofile."The mitigating circumstances that you'll have submitted do not make it okay to kill... do not absolve him of the homicide... do not justify it. There are things submitted by the court gleamed from his life, that we contend to you make him less deserving of death or more deserving of life."But Assistant District Attorney Calvin Colyer says the death penalty should be the only reasonable option for both Kevin and Tilmon Golphin.

Listen toauorReal Audiofile."This case, ladies and gentleman, I contend to you, is one of the worst of the worst murders you will ever see in the state of North Carolina. These two defendants are two of the worst of the worst defendants that you will ever see in the state of North Carolina. And if you don't give them the death penalty in this case... nobody else will."After arguments are finished, the jury will receive instructions and will have to decide between the life or death. The jury must recommend a unanimous decision to the judge. The recommendation is binding.

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