David Russ was sentenced to death by the State of Florida for a robbery murder. According to court documents David Russ would break into the victims, Madeleine Leinen, home where the woman was hogtied and stabbed repeatedly. David Russ would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death.
David Russ 2021 Information
|RUSS, DAVID B
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David Russ More News
On February 6, 2008, Russ, pleaded guilty to the May 7, 2007, first-degree murder of Madeleine Leinen.1 The facts of the underlying crime are laid out in the trial court’s sentencing order:
Shortly before midnight on the evening of May 6, 2007, Longwood Police Officer Brad Tollas noticed a white Jeep Cherokee parked in the parking lot of a business on Bennett Road. He approached the vehicle and observed the Defendant, David Russ, asleep in the driver’s seat. Russ had been on a ten day crack binge, and had cocaine and a crack pipe in the center console of the jeep.
Officer Tollas knocked on the darkly tinted window of the jeep and the Defendant responded saying he was “okay.” When Officer Tollas asked him to roll down the window, the Defendant started the jeep and drove away at a high rate of speed. Officer Tollas pursued the jeep and caught up with it in the Meadows West subdivision. He observed the vehicle, which was traveling at 5–10 mph, come to an abrupt stop. No one was found in the vehicle, and the defendant was not located after a search of the area was conducted. The jeep was abandoned about one block from the victim Madeleine Leinen’s home ․ in Longwood.
After fleeing on foot, David Russ spent the night on the rooftop of a house adjacent to the victim’s. Early the next morning, he observed Madeleine Leinen leave for work. It was at that precise moment she was selected as his victim.
Madeleine Leinen returned to her home shortly after 6:00 p.m. after stopping as Sam’s Club in Casselberry. At Sam’s Club, the victim purchased both perishable and nonperishable items. A Sam’s Club receipt detailing the items purchased and noting a checkout time of May 7, 2007, at 5:35 p.m. was on the kitchen counter. Frozen shrimp which were purchased were placed in the freezer and other items purchased were found on a box in the garage and on the kitchen counter.
After killing the victim, the defendant took her Toyota Camry and drove straight to the Fairwinds Credit Union in Apopka. There he attempted unsuccessfully to withdraw money from her account at an automatic teller machine. His efforts were captured by a video surveillance camera. The defendant then left Florida heading towards Texas.
Early on the morning of May 8, 2007, the victim’s lifeless body was found facedown on the floor in her hall bathroom by a friend. The victim’s hands and feet were tightly bound with rope and a rope ligature was around her neck.
The medical examiner observed injuries to the victim consistent with strangulation from the neck ligature. He also noted three lacerations to the victim’s scalp which he attributed to blunt force trauma. Four stab wounds, three to the victim’s back and one to the head were also found. Additionally, the victim suffered facial bruising, fractured ribs, and a dislocated clavicle in the attack. The cause of death was attributed to multiple injuries resulting from blunt force trauma, stab wounds, and strangulation with a ligature.
Enroute to Texas, the Defendant pawned various items of the victim’s jewelry and continued his crack binge by purchasing drugs along the way. The victim’s car was recovered in Gainesville, Texas. Items of her jewelry which had been pawned by the Defendant on May 11, 2007, were recovered at a pawn shop in Denton, Texas. The Defendant was arrested by the sheriff’s department in Denton, Texas on May 16, 2007.