Last updated on: 11/4/2013 | Author:

Ron Sylvester Biography

Reporter at the Orange County Register
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should the Death Penalty Be Legal?"

“Capital murder trials have two parts. In the first portion, the state must prove guilt. A unanimous verdict must be reached to avoid a mistrial. If the jury convicts on a capital offense, the trial moves to a second phase to decide if the death penalty is warranted. In this portion, the rules change. Some rules of evidence are relaxed and a unanimous verdict is required only for a death sentence. A single juror who opposes a death sentence can yield a sentence of life in prison. During the penalty phase, law requires the state to give reasons a crime rises to a capital offense. These are called aggravators — factors… The state must prove at least one aggravator… The defense may provide evidence — called mitigators — that life in prison, without parole, would be more appropriate. Jurors must be able weigh the aggravators against the mitigators.”

“Murder Trial Jury Shaped by Death Penalty Issue,” The Wichita Eagle, May 8, 2008

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Reporter, Orange County Register, Apr. 2013 – present
  • Gaming Reporter, Las Vegas Sun, Feb. 2012 – Apr. 2013
  • Reporter, The Wichita Eagle, 2007-2011
  • Chair, Digital Media Committee
  • Crime and Courts Reporter, The Wichita Eagle, Mar. 2000 – Feb. 2007
  • Staff Writer, Springfield News-Leader, Dec. 1976 – Feb. 2000
  • Former member, National Board of the Society of Professional Journalists
  • Attended, Missouri State University, 1977 – 1982
  • Attended, Parkview High School, 1973 – 1977
  • Blogger, Technolo-j