The Commission on Capital Cases was not funded in the FY 2011-2012 General Appropriations Act, and the Commission ceased operations on June 30, 2011. This site and the Commission website are being retained to provide access to historical materials.

The Registry Attorneys will be continued by the Justice Administration Commission.

These actions are effective July 1, 2011.

Disclaimer: The Commission on Capital Cases receives this information from a variety of sources. The site will be updated consistently as information is received and will be audited bi-annually. We make every attempt to ensure the accuracy of the information provided; however, the information should be verified by the applicable court prior to using it for legal or statistical purposes.


Last NameFirst NamePictureDC NumberAgencyCase Summary
HardwickJohn 073053RegistryCase Summary

Last Action

DateCourtCase NumberLast Action
6/16/2003USDC95-250-Civ-J-1Case reopened
3/3/2004USDC95-250-Civ-J-1Issues to be raised at SC submitted
1/28/2008USDC95-250-Civ-J-1Evidentiary hearing
2/17/2009USDC95-250-Civ-J-1Evidentiary Hearing
1/31/2003USCA97-2319Affirmed & vacated in part and remanded to the USDC

Current Attorney

Last NameFirst NameCityAddressZipPhoneEMail
KuritzRichard R.Jacksonville, FL200 E. Forsyth St.32202-3320904/355-1999Email


Last NameCase NumberJudgeCountyCCRCOrder DateContract Date
Kuritz85-3779 CFHaddockDuvalNorth-P8/14/20039/3/2003

Last Updated

2008-01-09 11:43:13.0

Case Summary
Direct Links

The Commission on Capital Cases updates this information regularly

The Commission on Capital Cases updates thisinformation regularly.  This information, however, is subject to changeand may not reflect the latest status of an inmate’s case and should not berelied upon for statistical or legal purposes. 


HARDWICK, Jr. John Gary (W/M)

DC#    073053

DOB:   05/29/59


Fourth Judicial Circuit, Duval County Case # 85-3779

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable L. Page Haddock

Attorney, Trial: Frank J. Tassone, Jr. – Private

Attorney, Direct Appeal: Clyde M. Collins, Jr. – Private

Attorney, Collateral Appeals:  Richard Kuritz –Registry (State)

 Terri Backhus – Private (Federal)


Date of Offense:          12/24/84

Date of Sentence:        04/24/86


Circumstances of Offense:


On 12/24/84, a fisherman found the body of Keith Pullamfloating in the St. Johns River.  The victim had been beaten around thehead and died as the result of gunshot and stab wounds.  Medical evidenceindicated that the victim was stabbed three times in the chest and back , shotonce in the back, and then struck about the head postmortem. 


Michael Hyzer, a mutual friend of Hardwick and the victimtestified that Hardwick had admitted that he had killed the victim for stealingdrugs from him and dumped the body in the river. 


Additional Information:


In a separate case (Case#  8500493), Hardwick wascharged with one count each of Robbery with a Deadly Weapon andKidnapping.  These charges were related to the First-Degree Murder chargein the above case.  On 06/27/85, Hardwick was sentenced to two seventeenyear terms for the crimes.   


Trial Summary:


04/04/85         Indicted for First-Degree Murder

03/13/86         Jury returned guilty verdict

03/27/86         The Jury recommended the death sentence by a vote of 7-5

04/24/86         Sentenced to death


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal

FSC# 68,769

521 So.2d 1071


05/14/86         Appeal filed

02/04/88         FSC affirmed conviction  and sentence

04/08/88         Rehearing denied

05/17/88         Mandate issued


U.S. Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of Certiorari

USSC# 87-7352

488 U.S. 871


06/03/88         Petition filed

10/03/88         USSC denied Petition


Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion

CC# 85-3779


02/16/90         Motion filed

03/06/90         Circuit Court denied Motion

03/21/91         Circuit Court issued supplemental order denying motion


Florida Supreme Court – Petition for ExtraordinaryRelief and Writ of Mandamus

FSC# 75,786

562 So.2d 345


03/30/90         Petition filed

04/09/90         Petition withdrawn


Florida Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of HabeasCorpus

FSC# 75,556

648 So.2d 100


02/16/90         Petition filed

03/15/90         Stay granted, pending 3.850 evidentiary hearing in the Circuit Court

09/08/94         FSC denied Petition

01/17/95         Rehearing denied

01/17/95         Mandate issued


Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 Motion Appeal

FSC# 78,024

648 So.2d 100


06/05/91         Appeal filed

03/15/90         Stay granted, pending 3.850 evidentiary hearing in the Circuit Court

09/08/94         FSC affirmed denial of 3.850 Motion

01/17/95         Rehearing denied & Mandate issued


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

USDC# 95-250-Civ-J-10


03/20/95         Petition filed

02/24/97         USDC denied petition


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

USCA# 97-2319

320 F.3d 1127


07/02/97         Appeal filed

09/04/97         USCA vacated denial of Habeas Petition and remanded to USDC


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

(reconsideration by order of USCA)

USDC# 95-250-Civ-J-10


09/17/97         USDC issued an order granting the Petition for Certificate of Appealability

10/27/97         Case sent back to USCA for appeal


U.S. Court of Appeals –Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Appeal (after reconsideration)

USCA# 97-2319

320 F.3d 1127


10/27/97         Case received from USDC after reconsideration

01/31/03         USCA affirmed in part and vacated in part the USDC’s denial of the Petition and

remanded the caseto the USDC


U.S. District Court, Middle District – on remand fromUSCA

USDC# 95-250-Civ-J-10



03/02/03         Proceedings stayed pending resolution of rehearing motion in USCA

06/16/03         Case reopened – Evidentiary hearing to be set


Florida Supreme Court –Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus

FSC# 03-1106

861 So.2d 429


06/20/03         Petition filed

11/21/03         FSC denied Petition


 Death Warrant Information:


01/10/90         Death warrant signed by Governor Martinez

03/15/90         Stay of execution granted by FSC 


Clemency Information:


12/07/88         Clemency hearing held (denied)


Factors Contributing to the Delay in Imposition ofSentence:


The four-and-a-half years to decide a Petition for Writ ofHabeas Corpus (02/16/90 – 09/08/94) and the three years to decide a 3.850Motion Appeal (06/05/91 – 09/08/94).  During this time frame, however, theFSC ordered an evidentiary hearing to be held at the Circuit Court level. The current delay arises from the Federal Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpusdenied in the USDC,  the subsequent appeal to the USCA, and remand to theUSDC. 


Case Information:


Hardwick filed a Direct Appeal with the Florida SupremeCourt on 05/14/86, citing the following eight errors: improper exclusion oftestimony; improper refusal to allow pro se representation; improperrestriction of cross-examination; violations of witness sequestration rule;defense had a right to a jury instruction on intoxication; failure of the stateto eliminate other reasonable hypotheses of innocence; improper conclusions onaggravating and mitigating circumstances; and error in finding two aggravatingcircumstances (heinous, atrocious, and cruel and cold, calculated, andpremeditated) based on the same facts.  The FSC affirmed the convictionand sentence on 02/04/88.


Hardwick filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari with theU.S. Supreme Court on 06/03/88 that was denied on 10/03/88.


Hardwick filed a 3.850 Motion with the Circuit Court on02/16/90.  On 03/06/90, the Circuit Court denied the Motion, but onappeal, the FSC ordered the Circuit Court to conduct an evidentiaryhearing.  After conducting the evidentiary hearing, the Circuit Court againdenied the motion on 03/21/91.


Hardwick filed a Petition for Extraordinary Relief and Writof Mandamus with the Florida Supreme Court on 03/30/90 that was withdrawn on04/09/90.

On 01/10/90, the Governor signed a death warrant forHardwick. 


Hardwick filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with theFlorida Supreme Court on 02/16/90 and a 3.850 Motion appeal on 06/05/91. On 03/15/90, the FSC granted a stay of execution, pending a 3.850 Motionevidentiary hearing in the trial court.  Following the Circuit Court’sdenial of the 3.850 Motion, the FSC denied the Petition for Writ of HabeasCorpus and affirmed the Circuit Court’s denial of the 3.850 Motion. 


Hardwick filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with theU.S. District Court on 03/20/95, citing twenty issues.  The USDC deniedthe Petition on 02/24/97. 


Hardwick filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Appealwith the U.S. Court of Appeals on 07/02/97.   On 09/04/97, the USCAvacated the USDC judgment and remanded the case for re-consideration, orderingthe USDC to review Hardwick’s Petition for Certificate of Appealability* thatthe USDC had granted in part and denied in part in its opinion on02/24/97.  In its opinion, the USCA noted that the USDC had erroneouslyapplied the Certificate of Appealability provisions of the AEDPA to Hardwick’scase, which was pending at the time of the signing of the AEDPA. 


On 09/17/97, the USDC granted Hardwick’s Petition forCertificate of Appealability, and on 10/27/97, the case was sent back to theUSCA for appeal.


On 01/31/03, the USCA affirmed the USDC’s denial of theHabeas Petition as to Hardwick’s conviction, but vacated the USDC’s denial ofthe Habeas Petition as to Hardwick’s death sentence.  The USCA ordered anevidentiary hearing to be held on claims that counsel was  ineffective atthe penalty phase of trial for failing to argue mitigating evidence. 


On 03/02/03, the USDC stayed proceedings in the case pendinga resolution of a rehearing motion in the USCA.  On 06/16/03, the case wasreopened and an evidentiary hearing is to be set.


On 06/20/03, Hardwick filed a Petition for Writ of HabeasCorpus with the Florida Supreme Court that was denied on 11/21/03.


* - The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA)was signed into law on 04/24/96.  The AEDPA governs the appeal process offederal Petitions for Writ of Habeas Corpus that are denied at the USDClevel.  According to the AEDPA, the USDC must issue a Certificate ofAppealability in order for the Habeas Petition to be appealed to a higherfederal court.


Institutional Adjustment:





DATE    DAYS                   VIOLATION                                                      LOCATION     


07/26/86    20                      DISOBEYINGORDER                                       FLORIDA STATE PRISON

09/22/87    30                      DISRESPECT TOOFFICIALS                          FLORIDA STATE PRISON

12/02/87    15                      DISRESPECT TOOFFICIALS                          FLORIDA STATE PRISON

03/02/89     0                        DISOBEYINGORDER                                       FLORIDA STATE PRISON

09/04/90    20                      DISRESPECT TOOFFICIALS                          FLORIDA STATE PRISON

08/01/92     0                       DISOBEYING ORDER                                       FLORIDA STATE PRISON

07/30/93     0                       SPOKEN THREATS                                          UNION C. I.       

07/30/93     0                       DISRESPECT TO OFFICIALS                         UNION C. I.       

02/28/94     0                       CONSUME INTOXICANTS             UNION C. I.       

07/28/94     0                       FIGHTING                                                          UNION C. I.       

01/18/95    60                      POSS OF ESCAPEPARA.                                 UNION C. I.       

01/25/95     0                       DISRESPECT TO OFFICIALS                         UNION C. I.       

03/26/00     0                       DISOBEYINGORDER                                       UNION C. I.       

03/26/00    90                      OBSCENE PROFANEACT               UNION C. I.       

02/19/02     0                       MISUSE OF STATE PROP                              UNION C. I.




Report Date:    09/17/01          JFL

Approved:       11/16/01          WS

Updated:         04/02/04          JFL