Florida Man Sentenced to Life in Prison For Fatal Beating While Stealing Rolex
Feb 11, 2016 11:29 PM EST
A South Florida man has been sentenced to life in prison for the fatal beating of an 80-year-old man while stealing a $26,000 Rolex watch in 2013.
In a report by ABC News, the suspect identified as 28-year-old Kareem Andre Williams was convicted of first-degree murder, burglary with assault or battery, and robbery by a Palm Beach County judge on Thursday.
Authorities said Williams spotted the victim, identified as Albert Honigman, wearing the gold Rolex while out at a Boca Raton mall in January of 2013. The surveillance videos showed Williams following Honigman back to his West Boyton home and beating him in his garage, NBC Miami reported. He also posed for a photo with the stolen Rolex soon thereafter.
Honigman died two days after the attack due to brain bleed from the beating.
Before the sentencing, Sun Sentinel reported that Williams expressed his condolences to the family of the victim who was a former pharmaceutical salesman.
Honigman's son, Jeffrey, who attended the eight-day trial, said "It's a good feeling that justice prevailed."
After a 3-hour deliberation, the jury dismissed the argument from the defense saying that a day before the attack took place, Williams was invited to the home of the victim by his daughter, Lauren Kanoff. Kanoff is alleged of exchanging the Rolex for an unspecified pills.
Williams' defense attorneys, Robert Barrar Jr. and Joshua Sheskin claimed Kanoff made up the story about the beating to cover up what really happened.
Assistant State Attorney John Parnofiello called the statements of the defense complete "fiction" as they have looked through Kanoff's phone records and did not see any single connection between her and Williams. Kanoff also testified that Williams suddenly appeared in their garage after her father parked his Lexus. She pointed out that Williams punched both of them in the face and even warned that there was an accomplice in his car who has a gun.
Kanoff said she was visiting her father from New York when the incident took place. "My dad would have gave him the watch," she stated. "We would have gave anything he wanted."
Meanwhile, Avery Jackson, the man in the car, was given immunity by prosecutors for telling the truth about why he was with Williams at the mall and how they were able to get inside the gated house of Honigman.
According to the prosecutors, Williams, who was a trainer at LA Fitness, fled the area to avoid being questioned. He first went to Tallahasee and then to Texas, where he was arrested a month after the attack.
Defense attorneys pointed out that he was only in Texas to attend an NBA all-star game and to avoid being jailed for a crime he did not commit.
Williams has had criminal history in the past including armed burglary and firearms charges. The attorneys of Williams said they will pursue his appellate rights and are hoping for a new trial.
Aside from the Rolex, Williams is also alleged of stealing a $30,000 engagement ring and a $2,500 necklace worn by Kanoff. However, the jury has not convicted him of one robbery count regarding these allegations.