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.


CAPEHART, Gregory (B/M)

DC #: 755994

DOB: 08/09/67


Sixth Judicial Circuit, Pasco County, Case #88-00394 CF

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Maynard F. Swanson, Jr.

Trial Attorney: A. J. Ivie, Esq. – Private

Attorney, Direct Appeal: Robert F. Moeller – Assistant Public Defender

Attorney, Collateral Appeals: Richard Kiley & James Viggiano – CCRC-M


Date of Offense:         02/03/88

Date of Sentence:       04/11/89


Circumstances of Offense:


Gregory Capehart was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of 62-year-old Marlene Reeves on 02/03/88.


Marlene Reeves, the victim, was an elderly woman who lived independently in her own apartment in Dade City.  She was completely illiterate; she could not read, write, or make change.  Edith Snow, a friend of the victim, testified that many people took advantage of Reeves.


Reeves’ body was discovered by police officers while investigating a reported break-in at her apartment complex.  Deputy Sheriff Jeffrey Clark found Reeves’ apartment ransacked and her body lying on her bed, with a pillow covering her face.  Reeves’ underwear was pulled down to her knees and her nightgown was pushed up to expose her breasts.  Medical examiners concluded that Reeves’ sexual organs were injured, indicating a sexual assault prior to death.  Reeves died as a result of asphyxia from being smothered with a pillow.  Investigators lifted a palm print from the scene, which was later found to match Gregory Capehart’s. 


Capehart admitted to Walter Harrison, a longtime friend, that he killed Reeves, but told him that it was an accident.  Capehart said that he broke into her apartment to steal some money, but Reeves woke up, and when he tried to knock her out with the pillow, he accidentally killed her.  When making a statement to police after his arrest, however, Capehart then claimed he was with a couple of guys who were going to rob Reeves.  Capehart claimed that he was outside during the robbery, and when he entered Reeves bedroom, he saw one of the guys strangling her.


Prior Incarceration History in Florida:



Offense Date




Case #

Sentence Length






1Y 6M 0D






1Y 6M 0D






3Y 0M 0D






3Y 0M 0D






3Y 0M 0D



Trial Summary:


02/24/88          Defendant indicted on the following:

                                    Count I:            First-Degree Murder

                                    Count II:           Burglary W/ Intent to Commit Assault

04/20/88          Defendant entered a plea of “not guilty” on both counts.

02/22/89          The jury found the defendant guilty of the following:

                                    Count I:            First-Degree Murder

                                    Count II:           Burglary W/O Intent to Commit Assault

02/23/89          Upon advisory sentencing, the jury, by a 7 to 5 majority, voted for the death penalty.

04/11/89          The defendant was sentenced as followed:

                                    Count I:            First-Degree Murder - Death

                                    Count II:           Burglary W/O Intent to Commit Assault – 15 years


NOTE:            Capehart’s sentence on Count II:  Burglary W/O Intent to Commit Assault was later reduced to seven years.


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court - Direct Appeal

FSC #74,231

583 So. 2d 1009


05/30/89          Appeal filed.

06/13/91          FSC affirmed the convictions and sentence of death; however, they vacated Capehart’s 15-year burglary sentence and remanded for new sentencing under

sentencing guidelines.

09/03/91          Rehearing denied.

10/03/91          Mandate issued.


United States Supreme Court - Petition for Writ of Certiorari

USSC #91-6582

502 U.S. 1065


12/01/91          Petition filed.

01/21/92          Petition denied.


State Circuit Court - 3.850 Motion

CC #88-00394


04/19/93          Motion filed.

04/08/94          Second amended motion filed.

12/16/98          Third amended motion filed.

08/21/01          Fourth amended motion filed.

11/15/02          Fifth amended motion filed.

07/14/03          Sixth amended motion filed.

04/21/04          EH held.

04/26/04          Judge ordered new penalty phase.

07/26/06          Seventh amended motion filed.

05/16/07          Order denying in part sixth and seventh amended motions. 

10/03/08          Order denying seventh amended motion.


Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 Motion Appeal

FSC# 10-275


02/08/10          Appeal filed.

05/13/10          Dismissed and returned to CC to conduct a new penalty phase proceeding



Factors Contributing to the Delay in the Imposition of the Sentence:


Capehart’s 3.850 Motion was pending for fourteen years, with seven amended motions. On 10/27/08, Capehart appealed to the District Court of Appeal, which transferred the appeal to the Florida Supreme Court on 02/04/10. 


Case Information:


Capehart filed his Direct Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court on 05/30/89.  In that appeal, Capehart argued that there was insufficient evidence to prove he killed Marlene Reeves and that the trial court erred in permitting the testimony of a medical examiner, who did not perform the autopsy.  Capehart objected to the testimony of Officer Muck who negated Capehart’s claim that someone else killed Reeves, and he also objected to the admission of character evidence of the victim.  In reference to the penalty phase, Capehart argued that the court did not adequately examine his claim of ineffective counsel and their refusal to grant him a new court-appointed counsel.  He also claimed that the court erred in its application of aggravating factors.  Upon examination of this claim, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the cold, calculated, and premeditated (CCP) aggravating factor was falsely applied to Capehart’s case.  With three other valid aggravating factors present, however, the Supreme Court deemed the inclusion of the CCP factor as harmless error.  On 06/13/91, the Florida Supreme Court affirmed the convictions and sentence of death; however, they vacated Capehart’s 15-year burglary sentence and remanded for re-sentencing according to sentencing guidelines.


On 12/01/91, Capehart filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus in the United States Supreme Court, which was denied on 01/21/92.


On 04/19/93, Capehart filed a 3.850 motion in the State Circuit Court.  He has filed seven amended motions, the last of which was filed on 07/26/06. On 04/21/04, an evidentiary hearing was held and on 04/26/04, the judge granted a new penalty phase.  Capehart is awaiting resentencing.  On 05/16/07, the Court denied in part Capehart’s sixth and seventh amended motions. On 10/03/08, the Court denied Capehart’s seventh amended motion.


On 02/04/10, Capehart filed a 3.850 Motion Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court. On 05/13/10, the appeal was dismissed without prejudice and returned to the Circuit Court to conduct a new penalty phase proceeding.


Institutional Adjustment: 



 DATE             DAYS              VIOLATION                              LOCATION       

 09/02/90         30                    POSS OF UNAUTH BEV.                 FSP

 08/17/92         0                      DISOBEYING ORDER                      FSP

 10/22/92         15                    POSS OF NEGOTIABLES                 FSP

 06/21/94         0                      PART.IN RIOTS                           UNION C. I.         




12/06/01 – ew

12/19/01 – approved – ws

05/18/10 – updated – kkr