The Commission on Capital Cases updates this information regularly. This information, however, is subject to change and may not reflect the latest status of an inmate’s case and should not be relied on for statistical or legal purposes.
COLEMAN, Michael (B/M)
DC # 067457
First Judicial Circuit, Escambia County, Case #89-01139
Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Nickolas P. Geeker
Trial Attorney: Ted A. Stokes – Private
Attorney, Direct Appeal: Ted A. Stokes – Private
Attorney, Collateral Appeals: Harry Brody – Registry
Date of Offense: 09/19/88
Date of Sentence: 09/29/89
Circumstances of Offense:
Pensacola members of the “Miami Boys,” a statewide drug organization, placed a safe containing drugs and money in the home of Michael McCormick. McCormick’s neighbors, Derrick Hill and Morris Douglas stole the safe from him. In order to keep the location of the stolen goods unknown, Hill and Douglas then gave the drugs and money to Darlene Crenshaw.
On 09/19/88, Michael Coleman, Timothy Robinson, Bruce Frazier, and Michael McCormick, members of the “Miami Boys,” busted into Hill and Douglas’ apartment in search of the stolen goods. Darlene Crenshaw and Amanda Merrell were also in the apartment visiting Hill and Douglas. Coleman and his associates then forced all the apartment’s inhabitants to completely strip, after which he tied them up with electrical cord. Darrell Frazier then arrived with Mildred Baker, McCormick’s girlfriend. Robinson ordered the captives to relinquish the stolen drugs, and when no one spoke up, he began stabbing Hill. Crenshaw stated that she could take them to the drugs, and left with Bruce and Darrell Frazier. Coleman and Robinson then raped both Merrell and Baker.
After showing the Fraziers to the drugs and money, Crenshaw escaped. When the Fraziers returned to Hill and Douglas’ apartment, Coleman and Robinson slashed and shot their five captives, including McCormick, and then all four men left. Despite being shot in the head and having her throat slashed, Merrell survived the attack and summoned police. The other four prisoners died at the scene.
Merrell and Crenshaw were able to identify Coleman from photographs, which aided authorities in their search for the defendant. The Pensacola Sheriff’s Department arrested Coleman on 02/14/89.
Timothy Robinson was sentenced to death for his part in the murders on 09/26/89.
Robinson was convicted of First-Degree Murder, Attempted Murder, Armed Kidnapping, Armed Sexual Battery, Armed Robbery, Armed Burglary and Conspiracy to Traffic.
Bruce Frazier was convicted of Second-Degree Murder, Attempted Murder, Armed Kidnapping, Armed Robbery, Armed Burglary, and Conspiracy to Traffic. Frazier was sentenced to 30 years for Trafficking and 50 years for each of the other convictions.
Darrell Frazier was convicted and sentenced to life for First-Degree Murder, Second-Degree Murder, Armed Kidnapping, Armed Robbery, and Armed Burglary. He was sentenced to 30 years for Second-Degree Murder and Conspiracy to Traffic.
Prior Incarceration in the State of Florida:
Prison Sentence Length
5Y 0M 0D
ROBBERY N/FIREARM OR D/WEAPON
4Y 6M 0D
TRAFFICKING IN COCAINE
4Y 0M 0D
**AGG BATTERY INTENDED HARM
15Y 0M 0D
NOTE: On 01/21/92, Michael Coleman was sentenced to 15 years for an Aggravated Battery that occurred while he was incarcerated in the Florida prison system for the aforementioned quadruple homicide.
02/14/89 Defendant arrested.
02/28/89 Defendant indicted.
05/23/89 Amended indictment filed, charging:
Count I: First-Degree Murder
Count II: First-Degree Murder
Count III: First-Degree Murder
Count IV: First-Degree Murder
Count V: Attempted Murder
Count VI: Armed Kidnapping
Count VII: Armed Kidnapping
Count VIII: Armed Kidnapping
Count IX: Armed Kidnapping
Count X: Armed Kidnapping
Count XI: Armed Kidnapping
Count XII: Armed Sexual Battery
Count XIII: Armed Sexual Battery
Count XIV: Conspiracy to Traffic
Count XV: Armed Burglary
Count XVI: Armed Robbery
Count XVII: Armed Robbery
06/01/89 The defendant was found guilty on all counts.
06/02/89 Upon advisory sentencing, the jury, by a 6 to 6 count, voted for life
09/29/89 Judge Geeker overrode the jury’s recommendation of life and the
defendant was sentenced as followed:
Count I: First-Degree Murder Death
Count II: First-Degree Murder Death
Count III: First-Degree Murder Death
Count IV: First-Degree Murder Death
Count V: Attempted Murder 30 Years
Count VI: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count VII: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count VIII: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count IX: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count X: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count XI: Armed Kidnapping Life
Count XII: Armed Sexual Battery Life
Count XIII: Armed Sexual Battery Life
Count XIV: Conspiracy to Traffic 30 Years
Count XV: Armed Burglary Life
Count XVI: Armed Robbery Life
Count XVII: Armed Robbery Life
Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal
610 So. 2d 1283
10/30/89 Appeal filed.
12/24/92 FSC affirmed the convictions and sentence of death.
12/24/92 Rehearing denied.
01/22/93 Mandate issued.
United States Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of Certiorari
510 U.S. 921
08/17/93 Petition filed.
10/12/93 Petition denied.
State Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion
03/24/97 Motion filed.
02/03/00 Amended motion filed.
07/16/04 Motion denied.
Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 and 3.203 Motion Appeal
08/02/04 3.850 Appeal filed.
04/18/05 Motion to relinquish to trial court for 3.203 (determination of mental
09/23/05 Relinquished to trial court for Evidentiary Hearing on mental retardation
09/06/07 3.203 Appeal filed.
State Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion
04/21/05 Motion filed.
08/01/07 Motion denied.
State Circuit Court – 3.203 Motion (Relinquished from FSC)
09/28/05 Motion filed.
08/28/07 Motion denied.
Florida Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus
01/21/09 Petition filed.
Factors Contributing to the Delay in the Imposition of the Sentence:
There was a four-year gap between the date that Coleman’s Petition for Writ of Certiorari was denied and the date he filed his Motion to Vacate Judgment and Sentence (3.850). During this time, Capital Collateral Representative (CCR) was attempting to withdrawal as his collateral counsel, citing a conflict of interest in having represented his co-defendant, Timothy Robinson. CCR’s motion for withdrawal was denied, however, upon reconsideration, the trial court vacated its earlier ruling and allowed CCR to withdrawal. When CCR was restructured into 3 regional offices, however, it was a moot point for CCR to withdrawal, as the conflict was resolved by having the co-defendants represented by different regional offices. In turn, Coleman’s 3.850 Motion was filed in March 1997 and was pending until 2004. On 10/14/98, Coleman was appointed a new registry attorney, Maria Laverde, who filed a Notice of Withdrawal from the case in October 2003. On 03/10/04, Spiro Kypreos was assigned as new registry counsel for Michael Coleman, but Baya Harrison was later appointed.
Coleman filed a Direct Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court on 10/30/89. In that appeal, he argued that the trial court erred in not severing his trial from those of his co-defendants, in refusing to have a requested portion of the record regarding DNA evidence read back to the jury, and in denying his motion to suppress the testimony of certain witnesses. Also, Coleman contended that the sentencing judge erred in overriding the jury’s recommendation of life. The Florida Supreme Court affirmed the convictions and sentence of death on 12/24/02.
Coleman then filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari in the United States Supreme Court, which was denied on 10/12/93.
Coleman next filed a 3.850 Motion in the State Circuit Court on 03/24/97 that was denied on 07/16/04.
Coleman filed a 3.850 Motion Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court on 08/02/04. This motion is pending.
Coleman filed a 3.203 Motion in the Florida Supreme Court on 04/18/05. The Florida Supreme Court relinquished this motion to the trial court for an Evidentiary Hearing on the mental retardation claim on 09/23/05. On relinquishment, the State Circuit Court denied the 3.203 motion on 08/28/07. Coleman then filed a 3.203 Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court on 09/06/07. This motion is pending.
Coleman filed a 3.850 Motion in the State Circuit Court on 04/21/05, which was denied on 08/01/07.
Coleman filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus in the Florida Supreme court on 01/21/09 that is pending.
DATE DAYS VIOLATION LOCATION
-------- ---- ---------------------------- -------------------
08/20/90 0 DISOBEYING ORDER FSP
02/03/91 15 POSS OF CONTRABAND FSP
02/26/91 15 DISOBEYING ORDER FSP
05/26/91 30 DISOBEYING ORDER FSP
09/01/91 60 ASSAULTS OR ATTEMPT FSP
04/04/93 0 DISOBEYING ORDER FSP
07/29/93 0 POSS OF NARCOTICS UNION C. I.
02/03/94 0 POSS OF UNAUTH BEV. UNION C. I.
05/23/94 0 DISOBEYING ORDER UNION C. I.
05/31/94 0 FIGHTING UNION C. I.
06/21/94 0 PART.IN RIOTS UNION C. I.
06/30/94 0 DISOBEYING ORDER UNION C. I.
07/01/94 0 DISOBEYING ORDER UNION C. I.
07/03/94 0 DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS UNION C. I.
07/25/94 0 REF. SUB. ABUSE TEST UNION C. I.
02/22/95 0 DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS UNION C. I.
02/27/00 180 POSS OF NARCOTICS UNION C. I.
08/01/01 0 DISOBEYING ORDER UNION C. I.
05/23/04 15 POSS OF NEGOTIABLES UNION C. I.
04/07/06 0 POSS OF CONTRABAND UNION C.I.
01/18/02 – ew
02/05/02 – approved – ws
01/05/10 – updated – kkr