The jury came back into the Tampa courtroom around 8:20 p.m. Thursday recommending 36-year-old Humberto Delgado, Jr. be sentenced to death.
The vote was 8-4 in favor of the death penalty.
Humberto Delgado, Jr. was convicted on Tuesday, Nov. 15 in the murder of Tampa Police Cpl. Mike Roberts.
Jurors listened to emotional testimony Thursday afternoon from Roberts’ wife and sister before heading into the deliberation room to agree on a recommended sentence.
Cindy Roberts talked about the night she learned her husband had been killed. That night, she was researching a family trip to Disney World to celebrate their son Adam’s 4th birthday.
“It was late when the doorbell rang. From the hospital, I had to make a difficult call. I had to tell Mike’s mother she had lost her youngest son, her baby. Then I had to go home and tell my baby his daddy wasn’t coming home,” said Roberts.
She read part of letter her husband had written their son after he was born. The couple planned to give him the letter on his 18th birthday, but she opened it early not long after Roberts was killed.
She read, “We both have waited for you for a long time. The bottom line for me Adam is that you instantly took over as the most important thing in my life,” she continued to read, “I cannot wait for us to grow together through the years. I’ve waited my whole life for this opportunity to raise a son and finally you’re here. I have big plans for you little man.”
The judge will have the final say on whether Delgado, Jr. is sentenced to death.
Roberts told reporters outside the courtroom, the jury handed down the decision she hoped for.
“That night he made the decision on when Mike’s life would end and now he himself will have to wait for someone else to make that decision for him, so he will have a small idea of what that’s like, to have your life, the end of your life decided by someone else,” said Cindy Roberts.
Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor said she accepts the decision by the jury, “We put this case in the hand of the court, the judge and the jury have spoken and we certainly accept their verdict.”
Chief Castor added, “It does allow us to close a very, very sad chapter in a number of lives and we will never forget Mike. He was an amazing individual, we will remember how he lived with dignity and honor and we will remember how he died serving his community. It’s certainly not a happy time. Nobody is winning here.”