Daytona Beach, FL - The penalty phase begins for the man convicted of killing three women in Daytona Beach over a decade ago.
Robert Hayes was convicted on Tuesday (Feb. 22) in the murders of Julie Ann Green, Iwana Patton, and LaQuetta Gunther, all of whom were connected to Hayes by DNA analysis. State prosecutors made it clear early on in the case that they had intentions to seek the death penalty.
At the time of the murders, around 2005 and 2006, Hayes was a college student at Bethune-Cookman University; and ironically was a criminal justice major. Friends who knew Hayes at the time said he seemed rather normal, participating in band and performing as a cheerleader with the Wildcats. But it was also around that same time that Hayes purchased the weapon that ended up killing Gunther, Green, and Patton.
Over a decade after their deaths, Hayes was picked up in South Florida in 2019 after investigators connected him to the 2016 murder of Elizabeth Bey. After that, DNA evidence from the original murders was linked back to Hayes, earning him three separate charges for first-degree murder.