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
ZakrzewskiEdward 554000Registry/FederalCase Summary

Last Action

DateCourtCase NumberLast Action
12/28/2007USCA07-15930Habeas Petition Appeal
7/7/2009USCA07-15930USCA affirmed the denial of the Habeas Petition
1/9/2008FSC08-59Notice of Appeal (3.851)
7/21/2008FSC08-59Initial brief filed
9/3/2008FSC08-59Answer brief filed
9/29/2008FSC08-59Answer Amended brief filed
12/15/2008FSC08-59Reply filed
2/17/2009FSC08-59Disposition affirmed
3/12/2009FSC08-59Motion for Rehearing filed
6/30/2009FSC08-59Motion for Rehearing denied
4/3/2010USSC09-10036Petition for Writ of Certiorari filed
5/4/2010USSC09-10036Response filed
6/7/2010USSC09-10036Petition denied
11/29/2010CC94-12833.851 Motion filed
1/12/2011CC94-1283Motion denied

Current Attorney

Last NameFirst NameCityAddressZipPhoneEMail
McClainMartin J.Wilton Manors, FL141 N.E. 30th St.33334-1064305/984-8344Email


Last NameCase NumberJudgeCountyCCRCOrder DateContract Date

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. 



DC#    554000

DOB: 01/31/65


First Judicial Circuit, Okaloosa County, Case #94-1283

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable G. Robert Barron

Attorneys, Trial: Isaac Koran & Elton Killam – AssistantPublic Defenders

Attorney, Direct Appeal: David A. Davis – Assistant PublicDefender

Attorney, Collateral Appeals: Martin McClain –Registry/Federal


Date of Offense: 06/09/94

Date of Sentence: 04/19/96


Circumstances of Offense:


Edward Zakrzewski, II was convicted and sentenced to deathfor the murders of his wife Sylvia and his two children, Edward and Anna.


Prior to the murders, Zakrzewski and his wife wereexperiencing marital problems.  Zakrzewski reportedly commented to aneighbor that he would rather kill his family than subject them to adivorce.  On the morning 06/09/94, Zakrzewski’s seven-year-old son,Edward, called him at Eglin Air Force Base where he worked for the Air Forceand informed him that Sylvia was talking about wanting a divorce.  Afterthat conversation, Zakrzewski bought a machete while on his lunch break. After making the purchase, he returned to work and completed a full day. That night, Zakrzewski arrived home ahead of the rest of his family and hid themachete in the bathroom.


After his wife and children returned home, Zakrzewskiattacked and disabled Sylvia, hitting her twice over the head with acrowbar.  He dragged her from the living room to their bedroom, where hehit her again in the head with the crowbar.  He then strangled her with apiece of rope.  Next, Zakrzewski called his son into the bathroom,supposedly to brush his teeth.  Zakrzewski attacked Edward with the machetehe had hidden behind the door.  Edward attempted to block some of theblows as evidenced by defensive wounds on his arms and wrists.  Edwarddied of severe head, neck and back injuries.  Zakrzewski then called hisdaughter, Anna, into the bathroom where he attacked and killed her with themachete.  There is some disparity as to whether Zakrzewski killed Annaimmediately as she entered the bathroom or he had her kneel over the bathtub,where her brother’s body was lying, and killed her execution-style. There wasevidence of defensive wounds on Anna’s arms and hands.  Zakrzewski thendragged his wife’s body from their bedroom to the bathroom, where he furtherassaulted her with the machete.  Reports indicated that Sylvia died fromboth blunt and sharp-force injuries.


After the murders, Zakrzewski drove to Orlando, where heboarded a plane headed for Hawaii.  In Hawaii, Zakrzewski changed his nameand took up residence with a family who ran a religious commune. Zakrzewski turned himself in to Hawaiian officials after the family he had beenstaying with saw his picture televised on Unsolved Mysteries.


Additional Information:


Prior to being sentenced for the murders of his wife andchildren, Zakrzewski attempted an escape from custody on 08/13/95.  He wasconvicted and sentenced to one-and-a-half year’s incarceration for the attempt.


Trial Summary:


11/10/94         The defendant was indicted on the following charges:

                                   Count I:          First-Degree Murder (Sylvia Zakrzewski)

                                   Count II:         First-Degree Murder(Edward Zakrzewski)

                                   Count III:        First-Degree Murder (AnnaZakrzewski)

03/19/96         The defendant pled guilty to all counts charged in the indictment.

03/30/96         Upon advisory sentencing, the jury, by a 7 to 5 majority, voted for the

imposition of the death penaltyfor the murders of Sylvia and Edward and life imprisonment for the murder ofAnna.

04/19/96         The defendant was sentenced as follows:

                                   Count I:          First-Degree Murder (Sylvia Zakrzewski) - Death

                                   Count II:         First-Degree Murder(Edward Zakrzewski) - Death

                                   Count III:        First-Degree Murder (AnnaZakrzewski) - Death

*The trial judge overrode the jury’s recommendation of lifeimprisonment*


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal

FSC #88,367

717 So. 2d 488


07/01/96         Appeal filed.

06/11/98         FSC affirmed the convictions and sentences of death.

09/09/98         Rehearing denied.

10/13/98         Mandate issued.


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

USSC #98-7183

525 U.S. 1126


12/07/98         Petition filed.

01/25/99         Petition denied.


State Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion

CC #94-1283


01/24/00         Motion filed.

06/17/02         Motion denied.


Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 Appeal

FSC# 02-1734

866 So. 2d 688


08/05/02         Appeal filed.

11/13/03         Denial affirmed.

03/05/04         Mandate issued.


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

USDC# 04-66


02/23/04         Petition filed.

09/30/04         Petition denied.

06/08/05         60(b) Motion filed.

03/06/06         60(b) Motion denied.


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

USCA# 04-15685

455 F. 3d 1254


10/28/04         Appeal filed.

07/13/06         Denial affirmed.

11/15/06         Mandate issued.


U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit – 60(b) MotionAppeal

USCA# 06-12804


05/04/06         Appeal filed.

07/05/07         Judgment vacated and remanded to USDC.


U.S. District Court, Northern District – Petition forWrit of Habeas Corpus (on remand)

USDC# 04-66


09/26/07         Motion denied.


U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit – Appeal

USCA# 06-13452


05/30/06         Appeal filed.

11/09/06         Appeal voluntarily dismissed.


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

USSC# 06-9453

127 S. Ct. 2051


01/30/07         Petition filed.

04/16/07         Petition denied.


State Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion

CC #94-1283


05/14/07         Motion filed.

07/23/07         Motion denied.

08/10/07         Motion for Rehearing filed.

08/30/07         Motion for Rehearing denied.


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

USCA# 07-15930

573 F.3d 1210


12/28/07         Appeal filed.

07/07/09         USCA affirmed the denial of the petition.


Florida Supreme Court – 3.851 Appeal

FSC# 08-59

13 So.3d 1057


01/09/08         Appeal filed.

02/17/09         Disposition affirmed.

03/12/09         Motion for Rehearing filed.

06/30/09         Motion for Rehearing denied.


United States Supreme Court – Petition for Writ ofCertiorari

USSC# 09-10036

130 S.Ct. 3390


04/03/10          Petition filed.

06/07/10          Petition denied.


State Circuit Court – 3.851 Motion

CC# 94-1283


11/29/10          Motion filed.

01/12/11          Motion denied.


Case Information:


On 07/01/96, Zakrzewski filed a Direct Appeal in the FloridaSupreme Court.  In that appeal, he argued that the heinous, atrocious andcruel (HAC) aggravating factor was erroneously applied to all three murders, asit was never his intention to torture any of his victims.  The FloridaSupreme Court noted that the HAC aggravating factor was erroneously applied asto the murder of Sylvia; however, this error was determined to be harmless inlieu of the other proven aggravating circumstances.  Zakrzewski alsoargued that it was error for the trial judge to overrule the jury’s advisorysentence for the murder of Anna.  Other issues of contention included thepresentation of prejudicial photographs of the victims and the admission oftestimony by the State’s own mental health expert.  The Florida SupremeCourt affirmed the convictions and sentences of death on 06/11/98.


On 12/07/98, Zakrzewski filed a Petition for Writ ofCertiorari in the United States Supreme Court that was subsequently denied on01/25/99.


On 01/24/01, Zakrzewski filed a 3.850 Motion in the StateCircuit Court, which was denied on 06/17/02.  He filed an appeal of thatdecision in the Florida Supreme Court on 08/5/02, which was denied on 11/13/03.


Zakrzewski filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus to theUnited States District Court, Northern District on 02/23/04.  Zakrzewskiraised claims that his Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments wereviolated.  He also claimed that he received ineffective assistance ofcounsel.  He argued that his attorney failed to object to inappropriatecomments made during the prosecutor’s closing argument and also failed tosuppress evidence discovered in his house during a warrantless search. The court did not find sufficient merit in Zakrzewski’s claims andtherefore denied his petition on 09/30/04.

On 06/08/05, Zakrzewski filed a 60(b) Motion that was deniedon 03/06/06. 


On 10/28/04, Zakrzewski filed a Habeas Appeal to the UnitedStates Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit.  The court affirmed the denial ofZakrzewski’s Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus on 07/13/06. 


On 05/04/06, Zakrzewski filed a 60(b) Motion Appeal to theUnited States Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit.  On 07/05/07, the UnitedStates Court of Appeals vacated the lower court’s judgment and remanded theMotion to the United States District Court.


On 09/26/07, the United States District Court denied theHabeas Petition on remand.


On 05/30/06, Zakrzewski filed an appeal to the United StatesCourt of Appeals, 11th Circuit that was voluntarily dismissed on 11/07/06.


Zakrzewski filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari to theUnited States Supreme Court on 01/30/07 that was denied on 04/16/07.


Zakrzewski filed a Successive 3.851 Motion to Vacate in theCircuit Court on 05/14/07.  This motion was denied on 07/23/07.  On08/10/07, Zakrzewski filed a Motion for Rehearing, which was denied on 08/30/07.


On 12/28/07, Zakrzewski appealed the 09/26/07 denial of hisHabeas Petition in the United States District Court by filing a Habeas PetitionAppeal in the United States Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit.  On 07/07/09,the United States Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of the petition.


On 01/09/08, Zakrzewski filed a 3.851 appeal in the FloridaSupreme Court.  On 02/17/09, the Florida Supreme Court affirmed thedisposition.  On 03/12/09, Zakrzewski filed a Motion for Rehearing, whichwas denied on 06/30/09.


Zakrzewski filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari to theUnited States Supreme Court on 04/03/10. This petition was denied on 06/07/10.


On 11/29/10, Zakrzewski filed a 3.851 Motion in the StateCircuit Court. This motion was denied on 01/12/11.



Institutional Adjustment: 


































Report Date:    04/30/03          EW

Approved:       05/13/03          WS

Updated:         01/21/11          EMJ