A Manatee County man who found his wife murdered in their home took the stand Monday in the trial of the accused killer.
Testimony got underway Monday in the murder trial against Delmer Smith. Smith, 41, is charged with beating Kathleen Briles to death with an antique sewing machine on August 3, 2009.
Three years ago this month, the victim's husband James Briles returned home and found his wife bludgeoned to death in the couple's Terra Ceia home.
Monday, jurors heard the 911 call Briles made after finding his wife.
"I just got home. My wife is on the floor. There is blood all over," Briles said in the call.
Briles fought back tears as he described to jurors how he found his wife. He said she had been gagged, wasn't breathing, and he told jurors that he knew she was dead.
Delmer Smith is charged with first-degree murder, and faces the death penalty if convicted. He was arrested several months after the crime after investigators tied him to several items taken from the home on the day Briles was killed.
Smith is already serving a life sentence following his conviction last year in Sarasota County on home invasion charges. He is also charged in three Sarasota County home invasion/robberies and one Manatee County home invasion/robbery.
In each incident investigators say the suspect targeted older women and wore dark clothing and a mask. Smith allegedly committed these crimes to support a drug habit.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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