James Robert “Bob” Ward, 63-year old Millionaire, was found guilty of fatally shooting his wife, Diane Ward, inside their Isleworth mansion two years ago, on Sept. 21, 2009. The orange county jury took 13 hours over 2 days to find Ward guilty of second-degree murder.
Ward was accused of shooting of his wife, Diane, in September 2009.The slaying happened days before she was to give a deposition in a lawsuit alleging that he blew millions of dollars on big houses and expensive cars while his business failed. Defense attorneys said that Ward’s wife was suicidal, and that he was trying to stop her from killing herself. Ward never took the stand in his defense.Source: www.google.com
In her closing argument, prosecutor Robin Wilkinson urged jurors to use common sense, telling the panel that evidence suggested the couple had a fight.
Bob Ward shot Diane in the face at a distance of about 18 inches, and then took the time to place the revolver in the nightstand, Wilkinson said.
Wilkinson argued the defense didn’t prove Diane Ward was suicidal, and noted that prior to the shooting she talked to friends and family, joined Facebook and planned for the future.
Bob Ward, Wilkinson argued, was under tremendous stress because of his business failings. Diane Ward was scheduled to be questioned under oath about her husband’s troubled business and the family’s lavish lifestyle.
Defense attorney Kirk Kirkconnell attempted to cast doubt on the state’s theory, telling the jury Diane Ward could have been trying to commit suicide or trying to shoot her husband.
Kirkconnell told jurors that Ward would probably not be in court without the recording of the 911 call he made, alerting authorities to his wife’s death.
“The horse that the state is riding in this case is the 911 tape,” he said Thursday.
In that 911 call, which jurors previously heard, Ward told a dispatcher he shot his wife, and then, “She’s dead. She’s gone. I’m sorry.”
Kirkconnell said Ward’s words came out of a feeling of “moral responsibility,” but not murder.
“Mr. Ward did not say I just [murdered] my wife. I just killed my wife,” the lawyer said.Source: www.orlandosentinel.com
Sentencing is set for November 8th 2011.