Jennifer Mee listens to testimony during her trial for first degree murder
Pinellas County, Florida -- This week, Jennifer Mee has been on trial for first-degree murder. Prosecutors say along with two men, she lured the victim, Shannon Griffin, to a vacant house in St. Petersburg with the intention of robbing him.
Griffin wound up bleeding to death in an alley with four bullets in him.
Under Florida law, even though Mee did not pull the trigger, she can still be convicted of murder. That was the thrust of the closing arguments by the state.
"She was the bait," prosecutor Jan Olney told jurors. "That's why Shannon Griffin is not with us today."
But defense attorney John Trevena outlined a different theory for the crime. He tried to drag Mee's former roommate, Jennifer Charron, into the murder mess, but testimony to support that was weak at best.
And so, during his closing argument, Trevena emphasized to jurors that Mee came into the courtroom presumed innocent and that it was up to the state to prove its case.
"Not only must you have an abiding conviction of guilt, it must be one that does not waiver or vacillate," he said.
Mee gained national attention in 2007 for hiccups that would not stop.
A first-degree murder conviction carries only one sentence -- life in prison, without the possibility of parole. But the judge is allowing jurors to also consider lesser charges of manslaughter and accessory after the fact.
The jury panel began its deliberations shortly after 6 p.m.