Jury hears from family during punishment phase of Stay family murder trial

By Vincent Crivelli - Reporter, Daniela Sternitzky-Di Napoli - Digital News Editor

HOUSTON - Five years after the murders of six family members in Spring, the man responsible could learn his fate.

After two days of deliberation, Ronald Haskell was convicted of capital murder Thursday for the slayings of his sister-in-law, her husband and five of their kids.

The jury is back in the courtroom Monday for the punishment phase of the trial to determine if Haskell should be sentenced to life without parole or death.

During opening statements, prosecutors argued for the death penalty claiming Haskell is a danger to society.

"We can sit down right now and rest our case because we believe that the offense itself has proved to you beyond a reasonable doubt that this defendant will be a future danger," said a member of the prosecution. 

His defense attorney tried to persuade the jury that he is not a danger and should be sentenced to life without parole instead. 

"We want to save his life. That's our job," said defense attorney Neil Davis III. "He's been institutionalized. He's been in the jail for five years. There have been no problems in the jail. He's been medicated. His mental health issues have been treated."

After opening statements, the jury began hearing from friends and surviving members of the Stay family as they share how the loss has affected their lives. 

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