Jury hearing testimony, deciding killer's fate

By Nicole Johnson  bio | email | twitter

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - After a day of testimony, the jury deciding whether Colin Borughton will live or die will reconvene Friday morning. Thursday, Berkely County prosecutors questioned witnesses and showed crime scene photos.

A week ago, the 25-year-old Broughton was found guilty of murder and other crimes related to the 2006 death of his aunt Shirley Birch.

Solicitor Scarlett Wilson says the murder was highly aggravated because it happened along with an armed robbery, criminal sexual assault, and attempted arson.

"We don't have to prove all three of those things but I'll say we have and we will incorporate them, but just one, just one aggravating circumstance, and after that threshold is met, then the death penalty is there for your consideration," said Wilson.

The defense says Broughton should get life in prison because he was traumatized as a child. His attorney says his older family members physically and sexually abused him.

"He was a little boy and he'd be left at a grandparents house almost with no supervision, and his abusers were older male relatives who could come and go and come and go," defense attorney Bill McGuire said.

Prosecutors say he took a claw hammer and beat her to death and then he flicked a cigarette at the crime scene in attempts to hide the evidence.

The trial resumes Friday at 9:30 am.

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