In the Port Richmond neighborhood where Sergeant Stephen Liczbinski was gunned down in May of 2008 there was outrage that his killers were shown mercy they never showed him. Hours after a jury declared themselves deadlocked, unable to decide whether to exact death by lethal injection; several members of that very jury came out to lay flowers and vent frustration that Levon Warner and Eric Floyd will live, not die for their crime.
"Just hurt that's all. We tried to do our best, and, I can't talk," said juror Teresa B.
The jury was split, 10 to 2, 10 favoring death, 2 unwilling to go along after three days of deliberations. The same jury unanimously found Warner and Floyd guilty of first degree murder, but couldn't agree how they should be punished.
The complication was that neither Warner nor Floyd was the gunman. That, prosecutors say, was Howard Cain, gunned down after firing the fatal bullet. With no decision from the jury, the judge had just one option life in prison, without the possibility of parole.
"Well we were certainly thankful that the jury could not reach a verdict," said Warner's attorney W. Fred Harrison Jr.
"Well we thought this case was appropriate for capital punishment, we thought the death penalty was appropriate, we put forth every piece of evidence we could muster, but the jury spoke," said Jude Conroy, prosecutor.
Sergeant Liczbinski's widow did not speak but one of her husband's killers did. Warner apologized to her family, and his. The judge, unmoved, didn't mince words calling Warner 'despicable', and Floyd 'a coward of the highest order', before ensuring neither will ever again see the light of day.
"This was a long ordeal, very difficult for the family, but it's over. Unfortunately it wasn't the death penalty but we'll never see them on the streets again," said Deputy Commissioner William Blackburn.