Credit to Alex Consantine.
October 12, 2000, EDDIE LEE SEXTON vs. STATE OF FLORIDA, SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA, 775 So. 2d. 923, 2000 Fla. LEXIS 1993; 697 So. 2d. 833 (1997) Conviction and Death Sentence Affirmed;
Overview: Appellant documents state that Eddie Sexton’s criminal trial was continued until August 1998 after the Appeals court in 1997 remanded the case back to the local court because testimony about the abuse of his children needlessly inflamed the jury. After the second trial, Eddie Lee Sexton was found guilty and sentenced to death again on Nov. 18, 1998. The Supreme Court of Florida affirmed the conviction and death sentence on October 12, 2000.
Eddie Sexton was convicted and sentenced to death for the participation in the murder of his son-in-law, Joel Good. Joel was murdered by Sexton’s 22 year old son, Willie, who strangled him to death under Sexton’s direction. Willie Sexton testified against his father in exchange for his guilty plea to second-degree murder.
The court noted Sexton moved to Florida in 1993 with his family and the victim to avoid arrest and prevent authorities in Ohio from removing his children from the home. His infant grandchild, who was the son of the victim and his daughter, died under suspicious circumstances.
Sexton objected to the testimony of 5 of his daughters, as cited in the appellate opinion that he: "beat them, conducted 'marriage' ceremonies with his daughters, had regular sex with them and fathered several of their children, encouraged his children to have sex with each other, made his sons compare their penis sizes and ridiculed them, practiced Satanism and engaged in other bizarre conduct, threatened his children if they discussed family matters with others, trained his children how to kill FBI agents, engaged in a standoff with police in Ohio shortly before coming to Florida, fled to Florida to prevent his children from being taken into custody, and directed the killing of his infant grandchild.” The States proposed motive for the killing was that Sexton's son-in-law knew Sexton was the father of his own "grandchildren." The prosecution wanted prior bad acts admitted to show the control this man had over his children. The appeals court thought this testimony needlessly inflamed the jury and so ordered a new trial.
News reports state that during the second trial, his son, Willie Sexton, said his father convinced him he had Satanic powers and sexually abused him. He also stated that he was tied up to his bed at night when he was a child, and the father gave coins to the other children to call home if anyone spoke about the abuse.
Sherri Sexton, daughter of Eddie Lee Sexton, discussed séances held in the home. She told news reporters that her dead cat was placed on a table and “my dad had all of us go around the table holding hands. He was talking weird. He was saying he was Satan… He kept asking us to give our souls to him – to follow him to Satan.”
Eddie Lee Sexton had been “ordained” by mail order at one time and had filed incorporation papers for a “Calvary Church of God.” Mr. Sextons own father was a “Free Will Baptist Preacher.” See “Children Tell of Life of Incest, Violence,” Beacon Journal , February 6, 1994; "Court Revisits Murder Case, Son's Fears," St. Petersburg Times, September 2, 1998.
[Eddie Lee Sexton is the husband of Estella Sexton whose case is described next.]
March 9, 1998, STATE OF OHIO vs ESTELLA SEXTON, COURT OF APPEALS OF OHIO, FIFTH APPELLATE DISTRICT, STARK COUNTY, 1998 Ohio App. LEXIS 1302; 1995 Ohio App. LEXIS 1413, Convictions for Complicity to Rape, Felonious Sexual Penetration, Gross Sexual Imposition, Complicity to Gross Sexual Imposition, and Child Endangerment Affirmed. Overview: Appellate documents state that in April 1992 Machelle, one of Estella Sexton's daughters, alleged that their father, Eddie Sexton, was molesting the three oldest daughters. There were 12 children in the family. DHS took six of the children into custody, but three of the children were returned to the mother under an agreement that she would keep the children away from the father.
In December of 1992, Mrs. Sexton fled Ohio with the three children, and reunited with Mr. Sexton at a hotel in Kentucky. On January 14, 1994, appellant and Eddie Sexton were arrested in Hillsboro County, Florida. The three children were returned to the custody of DHS.While living in Jackson Township, and in a camper in Hillsboro County, Florida, appellant and her husband perpetrated acts of sexual, physical, and mental abuse against all of the children. While living in Jackson Township, Kim, Lana, and Machelle were forced to participate in a wedding ceremony with their father. During the ceremony, Eddie engaged in a French kiss with the girls. Appellant was present, and took pictures of the ceremony.
The Court writes: "In the camper in Florida, appellant and Eddie gave Kim and Chris little red pills and Nyquil to ingest every evening, despite the fact that neither had a cold. On one occasion, Kim did not ingest the medicine and saw appellant fondling Chris' penis while he was asleep."...The mother and father inflicted "shaving rituals" on the girls. While living in Jackson Township, Lana and Machelle were forced to experience a similar shaving ritual. Lana was taken to the master bedroom for the purpose of punishment. Once inside the room, appellant held Lana down, while Eddie shaved her entire body with a razor. “While shaving her, Eddie cut her leg, put the blood on her finger, and made her sign a paper, saying that she was selling her soul to the devil." During the shaving, both appellant and Eddie Sexton fondled Machelle’s vaginal area.
Chris received beatings from both appellant and Eddie Sexton. He would beat Chris once or twice a week, while appellant guarded the door. The beatings would often leave bruises. Appellant and Mr. Sexton also punished Chris by having him stand against the wall for five to six hours, holding a penny against the wall with his nose. During this punishment, Chris was not permitted to go to the bathroom. At age twelve, Chris was forced to participate in weekend parties involving the family members in which he was given beer to drink.
According to Ohio vs. Estella Sexton, February 13, 1995, 1995 Ohio App. Lexis 1413, one of the children stated that family members were involved in satanic rituals, invoking spirits, and "baby thingies and things like that." “We will hold hands ... it mostly takes place after my grandmother died. They will bring her spirit back. Sometimes they bring devils back. They come out of the table and you see them floating around in the room ... we all hold hands while it’s happening.” This testimony regarding Satanic ritual was found by the court to be relevant to the proceedings.