New trial starts in dou­ble slay­ing

Tampa Bay Times - - Front Page - BY LAURA C. MOREL Times Staff Writer

For­mer Ja­bil ex­ec­u­tive Pa­trick Evans was con­victed and sen­tenced to death in 2012 for killing his es­tranged wife and her friend. But in 2015, the Florida Supreme Court over­turned his con­vic­tions, cit­ing er­rors in a de­tec­tive’s tes­ti­mony and crit­i­ciz­ing a pros­e­cu­tor’s re­marks.

A for­mer Ja­bil vice pres­i­dent is charged with mur­der in the deaths of his wife and a friend.

LARGO — A 911 call cap­tured the fi­nal mo­ments of El­iz­a­beth Evans and Ger­ald Tay­lor be­fore they were shot to death on Dec. 20, 2008.

Some­one told them to sit on a bed. They begged the in­truder to put the gun down. And be­fore shots rang out, El­iz­a­beth Evans said the word “Rick.”

That name, said Pinel­las-Pasco As­sis­tant State At­tor­ney Christo­pher LaBruzzo, is how El­iz­a­beth Evans re­ferred to her hus­band, Pa­trick Evans. He is charged with the mur­ders of his wife and her friend.

“There’s only one ver­dict in this case,” LaBruzzo told the jury Thurs­day dur­ing open­ing state­ments in Evans’ trial. “That’s a ver­dict of guilty.”

Evans, a for­mer Ja­bil vice pres­i­dent, was con­victed and sen­tenced to death for the mur­ders in 2012. But in 2015, the Florida Supreme Court over­turned his con­vic­tions, cit­ing er­rors in a de­tec­tive’s tes­ti­mony and crit­i­ciz­ing a pros­e­cu­tor’s re­marks dur­ing the first trial.

Pros­e­cu­tors are still seek­ing the death penalty.

LaBruzzo told the 12-mem­ber jury, plus two al­ter­nates, about the Evanses’ strained re­la­tion­ship.

They were mar­ried in 2005 and were to­gether for three years un­til they sep­a­rated in 2008. Evans filed for di­vorce, but later dis­missed his pe­ti­tion. El­iz­a­beth Evans, 44, had also filed to end

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