Jurors hear closing arguments in death penalty phase of Kirkland trial

Anthony Kirkland
Anthony Kirkland

By Brad Underwood – bio | email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Jurors heard closing arguments Wednesday in the death penalty phase of the Anthony Kirkland trial.

Defense attorney William Welsh blamed Kirkland's troubled childhood for the rape and murders of four women. Welch said that as a child, Kirkland would watch his father rape a family member.

Kirkland is guilty in the murders of four women - Casoyna Crawford, Esme Kenney, Mary Jo Newton and Kimya Rolison. The jury can only consider the death penalty for the Crawford and Kenney convictions.

"You don't have to be like him and choose death," Welch told the jury. "Choose life."

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters told the jurors to weigh the evidence against aggravating circumstances, which is the statement Kirkland made Tuesday on the stand.

"You took the oath. You shall recommend that Anthony Kirkland gets the death penalty," said Deters. "That is simply. That's your job."

The jury will begin deliberating Wednesday afternoon.

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