GASTONIA, N.C. -- The drama and outbursts in the Danny Hembree trial did not end Thursday even after he was convicted of first degree murder. In the sentencing hearing, Hembree addressed Judge Beverly Beal, claiming he didn't receive a fair trial.
"I ask you to set aside the verdict based on ineffectiveness of counsel and let's start this thing over and do it right," Hembree said. "My attorney's have advised the state, have advised the court numerous times that they couldn't adequately prepare a defense for me. They have told me point blank they have been ineffective in assisting me."
But Judge Beal disagreed, dismissing Hembree's request as he continued with the hearing Thursday morning. The prosecution called at least five different witnesses to the stand about various other robberies involving Hembree.
According to testimony, all of the victims say they worked at various stores and restaurants and were robbed by Hembree either in 1993 or 2004.
The prosecution is trying to prove there are aggravating factors in the robberies in order to have Hembree sentenced to death.
Testimony will continue on Monday.