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Joseph Zieler elbows attorney ahead of sentencing

Joseph Zieler elbows attorney
Posted at 7:13 AM, Jun 26, 2023

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — Chaos erupted in a Lee County Courtroom on Monday morning after Joseph Zieler elbowed his attorney in the face just hours ahead of his sentencing.

Fox 4 was inside the courtroom when it happened.

Seconds after Zieler entered the courtroom Zieler motioned to speak with his attorney, Kevin Shirley.

Shirley walked over to Zieler and leaned into him and Zieler threw an elbow to Shirley's face.

Joseph Zieler elbows attorney

Immediately after the incident deputies tackled Zieler straight to the ground.

Fox 4 spoke with Shirley after the incident occurred.

"It seemed like he didn't want our conversation to be picked up by the microphones. So he waved me down and I bent over, and he struck me. The Bailiffs were extremely quick to respond and eliminated any future threat."

Zieler who was convicted of killing an 11-year-old girl and her babysitter in Cape Coral was back in court today in hopes of getting a re-trial after a jury voted in favor of Zieler getting the death penalty.

The judge has denied Zieler's motion for a new trial and has decided not to overturn Zieler's conviction.

The second hearing will happen at 1:30 p.m. where the judge will give Zieler his final sentencing which will either be 25 years in prison or the death penalty.

Follow along with Fox 4 as we continue to bring you the latest updates in this case.