Victim: Peter Delmonico (killed)
The accused: Donald Stanley Verne

Peter_Delmonico

Peter Delmonico

White male

Age at time: 51

Weapon: unarmed

 
Verne

Donald Stanley Verne

White male

Age at time: 49

Weapon: board

Defendant photo: Escambia County Sherrif's Office, 2010

Case type:
Unprovoked attack

Location:
Defendant's Property

Initiator:
Unclear

Witnesses:
No

Case year:
2010

Location details: In defendant's home, rented from the victim in Pensacola, Escambia County, on July 29, 2010

What happened: Donald Verne beat his landlord over the head with a 2x4 board and left him to die in the home he was renting from 51-year-old Peter Delmonico. When two friends discovered Delmonico barely alive on Verne's kitchen floor, the tenant told them he was in the shower and did not know what happened. But when police picked him up soon after, they found blood on his clothes.

The outcome: Verne's "stand your ground" motion was denied by a judge and discounted by a jury. He was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Investigating agency: Escambia County Sheriff

Case decision made by: Jury

Trayvon Martin’s death became controversial because circumstances leading up to the shooting cast doubt on who was to blame. The Tampa Bay Times reviewed other “stand your ground” cases for similar circumstances. The Times relied on available information, some of which may not tell the whole story. When the situation was unclear, that was noted.

Yes No Unclear/
disputed

Did the victim initiate the confrontation?

Check

Was the victim armed?

Check

Was the victim committing a crime that led to the confrontation?

Check

Did the defendant pursue the victim?

Check

Could the defendant have retreated to avoid the conflict?

Check

Was the defendant on his or her property?

Check

Did someone witness the attack?

Check

Was there physical evidence?

Check

Source: Escambia County Clerk of the Circuit Court, July 30, 2010.

Source: Pensacola News Journal, Feb. 8, 2011.

Source: Pensacola News Journal, Feb. 24, 2011.

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Case last updated: Aug. 10, 2013