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 upon for statistical or legal purposes. 


FLOYD, Franklin Delano (W/M)

AKA Warren Judson Marshall, Clarence Hughes

DC#    R30302

DOB: 06/17/43


Sixth Judicial Circuit, Pinellas County Case # 97-20160

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Nancy Moate Ley

Attorney, Trial: Pro Se / Michael Schwartzberg & Richard Watts – Private

Attorney, Direct Appeal: Douglas Connor – Assistant Public Defender

Attorney, Collateral Appeals:  Maria Chamberlin & David Gemmer – CCRC-M & Pro Se (Fed)


Date of Offense:         03/13/89 – 06/16/89   

Date of Sentence:       11/22/02                     


Circumstances of Offense:


In the spring of 1989, Franklin Floyd was living under an alias with his daughter Sharon and her son.  Sharon and Cheryl Commesso worked as exotic dancers at a club.  Shortly after St. Patrick’s Day of 1989, Floyd and Commesso were engaged in a heated argument outside the club, when a coworker of Commesso intervened.  Floyd claimed that Commesso was responsible for Sharon’s loss of Medicaid coverage for her son (Floyd’s grandson).  The coworker also knew that Floyd had recently struck Commesso and caused a bruise on her face. 


Commesso was last seen alive during the first week of April 1989.  She left her house with a packed bag and told her relatives that she would see them the following week.  Her car was located at the St. Petersburg/Clearwater airport, where it had been parked since April 7, 1989. 


In May of 1989, Floyd told a neighbor that he was going on vacation and asked the neighbor to mow the lawn and collect his mail.  On June 15, 1989, Floyd and Sharon, using assumed names, married in New Orleans.  On June 16, 1989, Floyd’s trailer burned down, and Floyd later called the neighbor and asked that his mail be burned. 


In March of 1995, landscape workers found the skeletal remains of Commesso in an area off Interstate 275 in Pinellas County, Florida.  Roots growing in the skeleton indicated her remains had been there for six or seven years. 


In March of 1995, the owner of a Kansas auto repair business found a large envelope stuck between the truck bed and the top of the gas tank of a truck he had recently purchased at an auction.  In the envelope, he found 97 small and irregularly cropped photos, including many

pictures of a woman, beaten and bound, later identified as Commesso.  The truck was traced back to Floyd, who had stolen it in Oklahoma in September 1994, but had abandoned it in Texas the following month. 


The medical examiner determined that injuries to the cheek of Commesso’s skull were consistent with injuries sustained by Commesso in the pictures recovered from the truck.  Also, similarities in clothing and jewelry were found between the pictures of Commesso and items found with her remains.  One of the pictures of Commesso contained an image of someone else’s thumb, which was found by an FBI analyst to contain multiple similarities to Floyd’s thumb.  Many of the pictures contained images of furniture, a boat, and areas of a trailer, all of which belonged to Floyd. 


Additional Information:


After serving a federal prison sentence for a 1963 bank robbery conviction, Floyd absconded from federal parole in 1973.  He was a fugitive at the time of the Commesso murder. 


Floyd also has a 1995 federal conviction for carjacking and kidnapping, as well as a 1997 Oklahoma conviction for burglary with intent to assault and assault with a dangerous weapon.


A competency hearing was held in the Circuit Court on 01/30/07, and on 03/12/07, Floyd was declared incompetent to proceed. 


Trial Summary:


11/12/97          Indicted on one count of First-Degree Murder         

09/27/02          Jury returned a guilty verdict on the sole count of the indictment

10/01/02          Jury recommended death by a vote of 12-0

11/22/02          Sentenced to Death


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal

FSC # 03-35

913 So. 2d 564


01/09/03          Direct Appeal filed

10/12/05          FSC affirmed conviction and sentence

11/10/05          Mandate issued


Circuit Court – 3.851 Motion

CC# 97-20160



01/08/07          Motion filed

03/12/07          Declared Floyd incompetent to proceed. 

07/03/07          Amended motion filed

08/17/07          Motion denied in part and holding in abeyance in part

07/21/09          Declared Floyd incompetent to proceed


U.S. District Court, Middle District – Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus

USDC# 06-01065


06/06/06          Petition filed

06/28/06          USDC dismissed petition


U.S. District Court, Middle District – Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus

USDC# 06-1402



07/27/06          Petition filed

11/30/06          Petition dismissed

12/11/06          Certificate of Appealability filed

01/18/07          Certificate of Appealability denied

04/09/08          Petition denied on remand

07/14/10          Petition amended

07/14/10          Motion to stay proceedings

08/02/10          Order granting motion to stay proceedings until resolution of state post-conviction proceedings


U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit – Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Appeal

USCA# 06-16702


12/11/06          Appeal filed

05/10/07          Mandate issued: denial of appeal is reversed and remanded to District Court


Florida Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus

FSC# 08-1148


06/03/08          Petition filed

12/17/08          Petition dismissed


Factors Contributing to the Delay in the Imposition of the Sentence


The 3.851 Motion filed in 2007 has been pending due to competency proceedings.


Case Information:


On 01/09/03, Floyd filed a Direct Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court, raising the following issues: sufficiency of evidence, admission of collateral crime evidence, admission of photographic evidence, admission of expert testimony, improper State closing argument, applicability of Ring v. Arizona, and applicability of the Eighth Amendment.  On 10/12/05, the FSC affirmed the conviction and sentence.


On 01/08/07, Floyd filed a 3.851 Motion with the Circuit Court.  A competency hearing was held on 01/30/07, and on 03/12/07, the Circuit Court declared Floyd incompetent to proceed.  On 07/03/07, Floyd filed an amended motion.  On 08/17/07, this motion was denied in part, and held in abeyance in part. On 07/27/09, Floyd was declared incompetent to proceed. This motion is currently pending.


On 06/06/06, Floyd filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with the U.S. District Court, Middle District, which was dismissed on 06/28/06. 


On 07/27/06, Floyd filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with the U.S. District Court, Middle District, which was dismissed on 11/30/06.  The Certificate of Appealability was denied on 01/18/07. On 07/14/10, the petition was amended and a motion to stay proceedings was filed. On 08/02/10, the USDC granted the motion to stay proceedings pending the resolution of state proceedings. This appeal is currently pending.


On 12/11/06, Floyd filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Appeal with the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit, which reversed the lower court’s denial and remanded the case back to the U.S. District Court on 05/10/07.  The petition was denied by U.S. District Court on 04/09/08.


Floyd filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with the Florida Supreme Court on 06/03/08 that was dismissed on 12/17/08.


Institutional Adjustment:





DATE                     DAYS                     VIOLATION                                        LOCATION      

02/24/03               4                              LYING TO STAFF              FLORIDA STATE PRISON

05/09/03               0                              DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

05/09/03               4                              DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

05/30/03               0                              DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

06/20/03               0                              DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

06/20/03               0                              DISORDERLY CONDUCT            UNION C.I.         

06/28/03               0                              UNARMED ASSAULT                      UNION C.I.         

06/28/03               0                              UNARMED ASSAULT                      UNION C.I.         

07/05/03               0                              SPOKEN THREATS                           UNION C.I.         

07/06/03               0                              DEST. OF ST. PROP.                          UNION C.I.         

11/24/03               12                           DISORDERLY CONDUCT            UNION C.I.         

04/19/04               0                              DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

07/19/04               40                           DISOBEYING ORDER                      UNION C.I.         

10/28/04               16                           DISRESP.TO OFFICIALS                 UNION C.I.         

05/17/05               30                           BARTERING WITH OTHER         UNION C.I.

04/11/06               90                           UNARMED ASSAULT                      UNION C.I.



Report Date:   01/11/06          JFL

Updated:         08/11/10          KKR