Man who pleaded guilty to killing a Nassau County deputy back in court for Monday hearing

The man who pleaded guilty to killing Nassau County deputy Joshua Moyers will be back in court for a hearing on Monday. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

MORE: Discovery material includes interview given by woman who was with Patrick McDowell on night Deputy Joshua Moyers was fatally shot

Monday’s hearing is a status conference for attorneys to see where things stand at this point in the case. As a potential sentencing trial inches closer, more people are being deposed by attorneys.

To give you an idea of how complex this case has become, an amended court document shows the state will depose several people, many of whom live out of state. Some from as far away as Washington state.

That includes friends from his time in the Marines, childhood friends, McDowell’s father, and his 13-year-old son, to name a few.

It’s been a long time since Patrick McDowell has physically been inside a courtroom, but his case is still moving forward behind the scenes.

The main question is how the standard for jury recommendation for the death penalty would be applied. McDowell’s attorneys have filed a motion for him to be sentenced under the previous law that required a unanimous jury vote.

Under current Florida law – the death penalty only requires an 8-4 majority. The Supreme Court has yet to rule.

RELATED: ‘A mess for a while’: Changes to Florida’s death penalty laws causing issues in high-profile local murder cases

The issue of McDowell’s post-traumatic stress disorder from deployment has come up several times since Deputy Joshua Moyers’ murder. And the state says it wants to do its own psychiatric evaluation on McDowell. Dozens of people have been named as potential witnesses to speak at his sentencing once it does happen.

RELATED: Attorneys want brain scans of man who killed Nassau County deputy before sentencing trial

After shooting Moyers, McDowell was on the run, leading to a manhunt in Nassau County that lasted days.

As of now, McDowell’s sentencing trial is expected to start in April at the earliest. His defense attorneys said at some point, they plan to file a motion for a change of venue, which means the sentencing trial would be moved somewhere else if granted. The hearing on Monday is set for 1:00 p.m.

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