Jermaine Foster was sentenced to death by the State of Florida for a robbery and double murder. According to court documents Jermaine Foster and two accomplices would force three men and a woman to drive to a remote location where they were robbed. Jermaine Foster would shoot and kill two of the men, Anthony Clifton and Anthony Faiella, and shoot and injure the third man. Jermaine Foster would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death
Jermaine Foster 2021 Information
|FOSTER, JERMAINE A
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On the morning of November 28, 1993, Gerard Booker came to the trailer shared by Foster and Leondra Henderson and stated he wanted to recoup his recent gambling losses by committing robberies. The trio proceeded to Auburndale to a place called “The Hill.” Armed with a .38 caliber handgun, a .9 millimeter handgun, and an Uzi-type automatic weapon, Foster and Booker, who were joined by Alf Catholic, approached three unknown men who were selling drugs from their truck. After forcing the victims to remove their clothing and lie on the ground, Foster, Catholic, and Booker stole the victims’ cash, jewelry, crack cocaine, and red Ford pickup truck. Henderson then joined the group, and they concealed the stolen truck for future use.
Foster and Catholic returned to The Hill and sold some of the stolen drugs; however, the proceeds of the robbery were not sufficient to cover Booker’s gambling losses. The group of Foster, Catholic, Booker, and Henderson agreed to find a local drug dealer and rob him. Then they retrieved the stolen red truck and loaded the guns from the earlier robbery into it. When the group was unable to locate their intended victim, they drove to Osceola County to visit a girlfriend of Catholic and to find other victims to rob.
At the girlfriend’s house, the group decided to accompany the girlfriend and some of her friends to the Palms Bar in St. Cloud. Catholic and Foster rode in the car driven by Catholic’s girlfriend, and Henderson and Booker followed in the stolen red truck. Both drivers stopped their vehicles in route to the bar, and Catholic’s girlfriend bought some liquor. Testimony revealed that Foster and Catholic drank liquor and smoked marijuana during the trip. Then the two drivers pulled over so the girlfriend could buy some gas. It was determined at that time that there were problems with the truck’s fan belt, which had caused the truck to overheat and smoke during the trip. Booker stated that they would have to steal another car in which to return home that night.
Once at the Palms Bar, Foster and Catholic drank liquor, and Foster played a video game and danced. After a while, the group went outside, and Booker detailed a plan to rob the entire bar. Foster told Booker the plan was “crazy” because it was unknown what “those boys got in there.” As the group headed back into the bar, Henderson noticed a black Nissan Pathfinder that was in the parking lot. Henderson determined that Anthony Faiella and Mike Rentas had come to the bar in that vehicle. In fact, Faiella and Rentas came to the bar to meet Anthony Clifton, who was with Tammy George. Henderson pointed out Faiella, Rentas, and Clifton to Booker as possible victims to rob of their money and their vehicle. The group decided upon a plan to follow the potential victims when they left the bar in the Pathfinder. Foster told Henderson, Booker, and Catholic that if the victims did not have any money, he was going to kill them.
At around 1:30 a.m., Faiella, Rentas, Clifton, and George left the bar in the Pathfinder. The other group followed them in the red truck. Catholic was driving the truck and rammed into the back of the Pathfinder to get that vehicle to stop. When the victims stopped and got out of the Pathfinder to *751 inspect the damage, the group in the red truck took out their weapons and demanded money from the occupants of the Pathfinder. After the victims stated that they did not have any money, the victims were forced to return to the Pathfinder. Booker drove the Pathfinder, and Henderson held the victims at gunpoint from the passenger seat. The others followed in the red truck.
On the outskirts of Kissimmee, the red truck again began experiencing mechanical problems. Catholic turned off the main highway and drove a short distance into a vacant field; Booker and the victims followed in the Pathfinder. All four of the victims were ordered out of the Pathfinder, and Tammy George was separated from the three male victims. The group again demanded money from the male victims. When these victims did not produce any, they were ordered to remove their clothes, and Foster had the men place their underwear and hands on their heads and lie face down on the ground.
At this point, Foster, from a position beside and to the rear of Anthony Clifton, shot Clifton in the back of the head, killing him. Foster then approached Rentas and fired at his head. The bullet hit him in the hand, and Rentas pretended to be dead. Foster next walked to Faiella and shot him in the head, killing him. After this, Foster approached George as if to kill her, but Booker talked him out of it. The group then left in the Pathfinder and unsuccessfully tried to dispose of it by driving it into a lake. All four of the assailants were apprehended within days.
Foster was first tried in federal court on charges arising out of these acts. He was there convicted of conspiracy to commit armed carjacking, armed carjacking resulting in deaths, armed carjacking, and two counts of use of and carrying firearms during and in relation to a violent crime.
A state grand jury indicted Foster on two counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted first-degree murder, and four counts of kidnapping. After a jury trial, Foster was convicted of all counts in the indictment. A penalty-phase hearing was conducted, after which the jury unanimously recommended that Foster be sentenced to death on each of the two first-degree murder convictions. Finding four statutory aggravators and one statutory mitigator, the court followed this recommendation and sentenced Foster to death. On appeal, Foster raises twelve issues pertaining to both the guilt and penalty phases of his trial. We will address *752 these claimed errors in the order in which they would have arisen during the proceedings.