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
GoreDavid 081008RegistryCase Summary

Last Action

DateCourtCase NumberLast Action
10/2/2007USDC07-22637Habeas Corpus
7/8/2008USCA08-14060COA filed
7/29/2008USCA08-14060COA denied
2/6/2009USSC08-8639Certiorari petition
5/18/2009USSC08-8639Certiorari denied

Current Attorney

Last NameFirst NameCityAddressZipPhoneEMail
AbatecolaJohn P.Estero, FL20528 Torre Del Lago St.33928-6350954/560-6742Email


Last NameCase NumberJudgeCountyCCRCOrder DateContract Date
Abatecola83-361VaughnIndian RiverSouth7/9/200710/17/2007

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. 


GORE, David (W/M)

DC#    081008

DOB:   08/21/53


Nineteenth Judicial Circuit, Indian River County Case #84-00581 & 83-361

(Venue changed to Pinellas County, Sixth Circuit)

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable L.B. Vocelle

Resentencing Judge: The Honorable Dan Vaughn

Attorney, Trial: James T. Long – Private

Attorney, Direct Appeals: 

1985: Richard Saliba – Private

1997: Gary Caldwell & Richard B. Greene – AssistantPublic Defender

Attorney, Collateral Appeals: John Abatecola – Registry


Date of Offense:          07/26/83

Date of Sentence:        03/16/84

Date of Resentence:      12/08/92


Circumstances of Offense:


David Gore and his cousin, Freddie Waterfield, picked upfourteen-year-old Regan Martin and seventeen-year-old Lynn Elliott, who werehitchhiking to the beach on 07/26/83.  Gore and his cousin drove the girlsback to his house, took them to his bedroom, handcuffed them each, and thenseparated them.  Gore cut Regan’s clothes off her and sexually assaultedher on three separate occasions.  After Gore left Regan, she heard Goretell Lynn that he would kill her if she did not shut up.  Gore had toldRegan to be quiet or he would kill her too.  Gore then put Regan in acloset, where she heard two or three gunshots.  When Gore returned, he putRegan in the attic, where she was later rescued by the police. 


A witness testified that a girl (Lynn) ran naked down the drivewayof Gore’s home, and Gore, who was also naked, was chasing her.  Gorecaught Lynn and threw her to the ground, then dragged her to a tree and shother twice in the head. 


Codefendant Information:


Regan Martin testified that she was “pretty sure” thatWaterfield left Gore’s house, and she did not see or hear him after the girlsarrived at Gore’s house. On 07/25/84, Waterfield, for his involvement in themurder, was sentenced to fifteen years imprisonment on one count ofManslaughter.


Trial Summary:


08/10/83         Indicted as follows:

                                  Count I            First-Degree Murder

                                   Count II          Kidnapping

                                   Count III         Kidnapping

                                   Counts IV-VI  Sexual Battery

08/15/83         Entered a plea of not guilty.

01/06/84         Venue changed from Indian River County (19th Circuit) to Pinellas

County (6th Circuit).

03/15/84         Jury recommended the death sentence by an 11-1 vote.

03/16/84         Sentenced as follows:

                                  Count I            First-Degree Murder – Death

                                  Counts II-VI    Life imprisonment


12/08/92         Resentenced to death.  Jury recommended death sentence by a 12-0 vote.


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal

FSC# 65,201

475 So. 2d 1205


04/19/84         Appeal filed

08/22/85         FSC affirmed conviction and death sentence.

10/21/85         Rehearing denied


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

USSC# 85-6072

475 U.S. 1031


12/18/85         Petition filed

02/24/86         USSC denied Petition


Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion

CC# 84-0581


02/24/88         Motion filed

04/19/88         Circuit Court denied 3.850 Motion


Florida Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of HabeasCorpus

FSC# 72,202

532 So. 2d 1048


04/04/88         Petition filed

08/18/88         FSC denied Petition

11/23/88         Rehearing denied


Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 Motion Appeal

FSC# 72,300

532 So. 2d 1048


04/22/88         Appeal filed

08/18/88         FSC affirmed trial court’s denial of 3.850 motion.

11/23/88         Rehearing denied


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

USDC# 89-203

763 F. Supp. 1110


02/14/89         Petition filed

08/18/89         USDC granted Petition, vacating death sentence

11/01/89         Rehearing denied


U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit – Petition forWrit of Habeas Corpus Appeal (filed by state)

USCA# 89-4026

933 F. 2d 904


11/12/89         Appeal filed

05/29/91         USCA affirmed USDC decision and remanded for resentencing.

07/06/91         Defendant’s rehearing denied

07/23/91         State’s rehearing denied

01/27/92         Mandate issued


U.S. Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of Certiorari(filed by state)

USSC# 91-669

502 U.S. 1066


10/18/91         Petition filed

01/21/92         USSC denied Petition


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal (afterresentencing)

FSC# 80,916

706 So. 2d 1328


12/15/92         Appeal filed

07/17/97         FSC affirmed sentence

03/05/98         Rehearing denied

04/06/98         Mandate issued


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

USSC# 98-5210

525 U.S. 892


07/14/98         Petition filed

10/05/98         USSC denied Petition


Circuit Court – 3.850 Motion

CC# 83-361


09/30/99         Motion filed

01/08/02         Motion amended

11/22/02         Motion amended

06/14/04         CC denied Motion


Florida Supreme Court – 3.850 Motion Appeal

FSC# 04-1458

964 So.2d 1257


07/23/04         Appeal filed

07/05/07         FSC affirmed denial of motion

09/26/07         Mandate issued


Florida Supreme Court – Petition for Writ of HabeasCorpus

FSC# 05-733

964 So.2d 1257


04/28/05         Petition filed

07/05/07         FSC denied petition

09/26/07         Mandate issued


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

USDC# 07-cv-22637


10/02/07         Petition filed in Middle District

10/09/07         Petition transferred to Southern District

04/11/08         Petition denied

07/22/08         Motion for COA filed

07/29/08         COA denied


United States Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit – HabeasAppeal

USCA #08-14060


07/07/08         Appeal filed

09/12/08         Appeal denied


United States Supreme Court – Petition for Writ ofCertiorari

USSC #07-8086

128 S. Ct. 1250


11/28/07         Petition filed

02/19/08         Petition denied


United States Supreme Court– Petition for Writ of Certiorari

USSC # 08-8639


02/06/09         Petition filed

05/18/09         Petition denied


Death Warrant Information:


03/03/88         Governor Martinez signed death warrant

04/28/88         FSC granted a stay of execution


01/31/89         Governor Martinez signed death warrant

02/14/89         USDC granted a stay of execution 


Clemency Information:


12/07/87         Clemency hearing held (denied)


Factors Contributing to the Delay in Imposition ofSentence:


The delay in this case appears to rise from the directappeal after resentencing that was pending from 12/15/92 – 07/17/97 and the3.850 Motion that was pending from 09/30/99 – 06/14/04.


Case Information:


On 04/19/84, Gore filed a Direct Appeal with the FloridaSupreme Court, citing the following errors: errors in voir dire, failing tosuppress his confession, admission of two prejudicial photographs, jurorinterruption of defense’s closing argument, as well as other proceduralmatters.  Gore challenged his death sentence on a number of grounds:failing to provide a list of aggravating circumstances prior to trial, error onjury penalty phase instructions, error in restricting closing arguments, andfailure to prove the existence of certain aggravating circumstances.  On08/22/85, the FSC affirmed the conviction and imposition of the deathpenalty. 


Gore filed a petition for Writ of Certiorari with the U.S.Supreme Court on 12/18/85 that was denied on 02/24/86.


Gore filed a 3.850 Motion with the Circuit Court on 02/24/88that was denied on 04/19/88. 


Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with theFlorida Supreme Court on 04/04/88 and a 3.850 Motion Appeal on 04/22/88, citingnumerous issues; however, only one was commented upon by the FSC: ineffectiveassistance of counsel in failing to present pertinent non-statutory mitigatingevidence that his cousin, Waterfield, exerted an influence over Gore thatmitigated his participation in the crime.  On 08/18/88, the FSC denied thePetition for Writ of Habeas Corpus and affirmed the Circuit Court’s denial ofthe 3.850 Motion.


Gore filed a federal Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus withthe U.S. District Court on 02/14/89 that was granted and his death sentence wasvacated.  Gore raised seventeen issues, but the most important issue wasthe failure of the trial court to consider non-statutory mitigatingevidence.  As a result of this, the USDC held that a fundamental error hadoccurred.   


The State filed an appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals on11/12/89, and on 05/29/91, the USCA affirmed the decision of the USDC.


The State then filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari withthe U.S. Supreme Court on 10/18/91 that was denied on 01/21/92.


On 12/08/92, Gore was resentenced to death.  The juryrecommended a death sentence by a vote of 12-0. 


On 12/15/92, Gore filed a Direct Appeal with the FloridaSupreme Court, citing sixteen errors, nine of which were considered by the FSC:denial of challenges for cause in the jury selection process, misleading thejury to believe that parole was possible, improper finding of an aggravatingcircumstance (prior violent felony conviction), error in jury instructions,unproven aggravating circumstances (avoid arrest, HAC, CCP), admission ofimproper testimony from a prosecutor,  improper admission of a police officer’stestimony, an unqualified judge to rule over a capital sentencing proceeding,and the resentencing violated a constitutional guarantee of a speedytrial.  The FSC upheld the death sentence on 07/17/97. 


On 07/14/98, Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorariwith the U.S. Supreme Court that was denied on 10/05/98.


Gore filed a 3.850 Motion with the Circuit Court on 09/30/99and amended on 01/08/02 and 11/22/02.  The motion was denied on06/14/04. 


Gore filed a 3.850 Motion Appeal with the Florida SupremeCourt on 07/23/04, and on 07/05/07, the FSC affirmed the denial of themotion.    A mandate was issued on 09/26/07.


Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus with theFlorida Supreme Court on 04/28/05 that was denied on 07/05/07.  The FSCissued a mandate on 09/26/07.


On 10/02/07, Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpusin the USDC Middle District that was transferred to the Southern District on10/09/07.  This petition was denied on 04/11/08.


On 07/07/08, Gore filed a Habeas Appeal in the United StatesCourt of Appeals that was denied on 09/12/08.


On 11/28/07, Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorariwith the U.S. Supreme Court that was denied on 02/19/08.


On 02/06/09, Gore filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorariwith the United States Supreme Court that was denied on 05/18/09.




Report Date:    08/07/01          JFL

Approved:       11/16/01          WS

Updated:         05/21/09          KLH