Wade Wilson’s Lawyers Request New Trial and Acquittal: Everything We Know

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Wade Wilson’s Lawyers Request New Trial and Acquittal: Everything We Know

Wade Wilson, the tattoo-covered Flordia man facing the death penalty for allegedly brutally murdering Kristine Melton and Diane Ruiz, has requested a new trial or acquittal in Melton’s murder.

In a court motion filed July 3 and obtained by Newsweek, Wilson’s legal team claims Florida’s new death penalty law violated Wilson’s constitutional rights.

Last April, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law to allow a death penalty recommendation if at least eight of the 12 jurors vote for it. Nine of the 12 jurors recommended Wilson be put to death for Melton’s murder during the June trial.

Wade Wilson Kristine Melton new trial
Wade Wilson, 30, killed Kristine Melton, 35, (pictured) and Diane Ruiz, 43, within hours of each other back in October 2019.

YouTube/Court TV/ Facebook

Ten of the 12 jurors also recommended Wilson get death for Ruiz’s murder.

If Wilson is sentenced to death by Judge Nick Thompson on July 23, he will be one of three Florida men on death row under the new law. It is currently unknown whether Thompson will hear the new motion that day.

In addition to the two first-degree murder charges, Wilson was convicted of grand theft, battery, burglary, and petit theft. He had stolen Melton’s car and also broke into her home and stole items from it.

However, his lawyer’s latest filing says the court denied Wilson’s pre-trial motion to sever the murders and burglary charges, and reads, “the state failed to prove that Wade Wilson possessed Ms. Melton’s car without her consent prior to her death.”

Therefore, Wilson’s lawyers are asking for a new trial or an acquittal on the murder, burglary, and grand theft charges.

Wilson and Melton at a live-music bar on Oct. 6, 2019. He went home with her that night, and the next day strangled her to death in her Cape Coral home where her body was discovered.

During the trial, Melton’s cousin, Samantha Catomer, testified that her dead relative was the quick-witted godmother to her child who made everyone feel safe and understood.

“Kristine will never experience motherhood, a role she was born to play,” Catomer said through tears, News-Press reported.

Ruiz was reported missing on Oct. 7. The bartender was walking to work at a nearby bar when Wilson approached her in Melton’s stolen car, asking for directions. Ruiz got in the car where Wilson strangled her and “ran her over until she looked like spaghetti,” Wilson’s dad said his son admitted during his testimony. Her body was found on October 10 in a field behind a Sam’s Club.

Newsweek has contacted Wilson’s lawyers for comment.

Do you have a story Newsweek should be covering? Do you have any questions about this story? Contact LiveNews@newsweek.com

Uncommon Knowledge

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

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