Jury reaches its decision in penalty sentence of the murderer of the Tree of Life


A federal jury in Pittsburgh reached its decision Thursday in the sentencing phase of the Tree of Life synagogue murderer, determining whether the convicted murderer should face capital punishment.

The panel would have to be unanimous in favor of death if Robert Gregory Bowers, 50, is to be executed for the Oct. 27, 2018 mass shooting in Pittsburgh.

The shooter opened fire on a congregation in Pittsburgh’s Squirrel Hill neighborhood more than 4 1/2 years ago in an anti-Semitic attack that shocked the nation.

The massacre claimed the lives of 75-year-old Joyce Fienberg; Richard Gottfried, 65; Rose Mallinger, 97; Jerry Rabinowitz, 66; Cecil Rosenthal, 59; David Rosenthal, 54; Berenice Simon, 84; Sylvan Simon, 86; Daniel Stein, 71; Younger Irving, 69; and Melvin Wax, 87.

The defense argued that the shooter is psychotic and has brain abnormalities, which led to his deadly actions that day in Pittsburgh.

But the government maintained that the truck driver from nearby Baldwin was a bigot who understood what he was doing on the day of the massacre.

He was active on social media, ranting about immigrants, promoting conspiracy theories and threatening Jews.

This is a developing story. Please check for updates.

Marlene Lenthang, Danny Cevallos and ben collins contributed.

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