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Jury deciding verdict for Waffle House killer

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The victims of the early morning robbery were marched into the walk-in freezer at the Waffle House, where they fretted about their fate, Satz said. One waitress, Barbara Nunn, told the others she was sure they were going to be killed because they could identify Hojan and his accomplice, Jimmy Mickel.

The second waitress, Delarosa, 18, was terrified. She had a 6-month-old son at home and didn’t know whether she would ever see him again.

The cook, Absolu, 28, tried to stay calm.

After leaving them alone in the cold, dark freezer, Hojan returned and ordered Nunn, Delarosa and Absolu to their knees.

Nunn pleaded with Hojan: “Hey, you don’t have to do this,” she said. “We can work it out.”

Nunn was shot first, in the back of the head. Absolu, according to the evidence presented to the jury, tried to defend himself but was shot in the arm and neck. Finally, Delarosa, her worst fears unfolding in front of her, was shot twice, once in the neck and once in the chest.

“The muzzle was 6 to 18 inches away from her neck when he fired that bullet,” Satz told the jury.

Committing a murder to eliminate witnesses is one aggravating factor that jurors are permitted to consider when deciding whether to recommend death. In shooting the victims, Hojan eliminated two witnesses.

Nunn survived and told jurors about what happened in the freezer.


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