Home / General / Dan Markel killing being investigated as a murder for hire

Dan Markel killing being investigated as a murder for hire

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One arrest; more expected shortly.

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  • postmodulator

    Horrible. Also shocking to me in that this is the first murder-for-hire plot I’ve heard of in years that wasn’t a police sting operation.

    • PotemkinMetropolitanRegion
      • ThrottleJockey

        Murder-for-hire is a real thing. Multiple cases out there. Here’s a saucy one I read a few weeks ago.

        This guy’s rap sheet reads like an endorsement for Three Strikes Laws. Why wasn’t he in Leavenworth turning big rocks into little rocks? If this guy had been in prison where he belongs, maybe Florida wouldn’t need Stand Your Ground laws…Who ever thinks we incarcerate people too long hasn’t met this guy.

        Sigfredo Garcia, the man arrested in connection with the killing of FSU law professor Dan Markel, has a long criminal history, according to records from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

        Garcia has been arrested at least 22 times in Florida. His first arrest, for vehicle theft, happened in Miami on April 30, 1997, just three days after his 15th birthday. Seven months later, he was arrested in Miami again, on charges of vehicle theft and burglary. He was arrested several other times as a teenager, on charges including assault on a law enforcement officer, car burglary, making or attempting to make an explosive device, possession of marijuana and trafficking in amphetamines, according to FDLE documents.

        As an adult, he was arrested on charges including aggravated assault with a weapon, criminal mischief, possession of cocaine and marijuana and strong arm robbery.

        • sonamib

          This guy’s rap sheet reads like an endorsement for Three Strikes Laws.

          No, you’re reasoning backwards. It’s true that most murderers had previous criminal activity. But most people who fall under the “Three Strikes” won’t become murderers.

          • ThrottleJockey

            Yeah, but since you can’t say, a priori, whose going to end up a murderer, you keep all habitual criminals off the streets. You have multiple robberies on your rap sheet I don’t see why you should be out amidst polite people.

            • Captain Oblivious

              Yeah, but since you can’t say, a priori, whose going to end up a murderer, you keep all habitual criminals off the streets.

              That’s convicting people of crimes they haven’t committed yet, which is totalitarian bullshit.

              It’s also an argument for just locking up the entire population, because a significant portion of homicides are committed by first-time offenders.

        • Hogan

          I don’t see any form of the word “convict” in there.

          • PaulB

            I very much doubt that this guy is a Big Julie with “20 arrests, no convictions.”

            • Marek

              Sit down! You’re rocking the boat.

            • Downpuppy

              It does say he has no prison time

              Very odd. And is there anything at all about why Markel was killed?

    • Crusty

      Apparently, you don’t watch nbc on friday nights. If dateline is reporting correctly, about half the people of Florida are involved in a murder for hire plot with respect to their spouse.

      • Denverite

        If dateline is reporting correctly, about half the people of Florida are involved in a murder for hire plot with respect to their spouse.

        TBF, that may not be too far off.

        • Captain Oblivious

          I live in Pasco County, Florida, also known as Trailer Trash Paradise. People here don’t have money for murder-for-hire plots. They just get drunk and shoot their spouse/neighbor/neighbor’s dog/own junk/whatever.

        • ajay

          Statistically implying that a quarter of people in Florida are trying to hire a hitman to kill a spouse who is simultaneously trying to hire a hitman to kill them.

          And don’t get me started on the married hitmen.

          • Warren Terra

            I must protest against all of this rampant stereotyping. It is absurd to say a quarter of the people in Florida are or are seeking to hire a hitman. This is the twenty-first century, a more enlightened age. A quarter of the people in Florida are or are seeking to hire a hitperson!

            • ajay

              #notallhitmen

      • AcademicLurker

        If dateline is reporting correctly, about half the people of Florida are involved in a murder for hire plot with respect to their spouse.

        And they all involve hilarious mix-ups and wacky hijinks like in Carl Hiaasen novels.

        • Crusty

          They also seem to involve someone who is hell-bent on keeping some crappy little condo.

          • Captain Oblivious

            crappy little condo.

            In Florida, this phrase is doubly redundant.

    • tsam

      Don’t remember many of the details, but we just had one here in Spokane. The guy just got convicted, if I’m not mistaken. I shan’t be arsed to look up the details because fuck that.

      • Denverite

        Hey — how’d the surgery go? Are you cancer-free? (If it’s a skin thing, be glad they cut it out. I knew someone once where they gave her some sort of chemo cream and it made her sick as a dog for a month. She said she’d rather have the scar.)

        • tsam

          Went pretty well, thank you.

          No radiation needed. This is one of those squamous cell based skin deals that has a very low metashenihgegbs rate, though it does rarely appear in younger people, and my first battle with it happened at 28 years old. To my knowledge, it’s all gone, and I’m hoping to get a couple of decent looking scars out of it. I already have a movie villain level scar below my left eye, but it has faded so much that it’s not plainly visible anymore. (I know, I’m a freak). They say that early appearance of these types of cancers doesn’t affect the likelihood that they will spread, but I’m suspicious of that claim. Skin cancers are somewhat progressive by nature, so I’m not confident that time isn’t my enemy in this situation.

          It wasn’t much fun getting it done, but it was over pretty quickly and I’m back to work today…so big picture: All good.

          • Hogan

            I had a thick aggressive melanoma removed from my back six years ago. Wear sunscreen. Apollo is trying to kill you.

            • Marek

              Apollo sucks. Athena all the way!

              • tsam

                Athena is my bae

            • tsam

              I had a thick aggressive melanoma

              Yikes–annual visits to the dermatologist now? I’ve been lucky to never get that one.

              • Hogan

                Annual visits to the dermatologist, annual visits to the oncologist. At least I’m not getting CT scans every four months any more.

          • Yay! Glad you’re ok!

            • Joe_JP

              indeed

          • JR in WV

            Glad to hear they caught it early. My Dad was a sun-worshipper, he would lay out in the evening sun and not even sweat. Til finally he had a funny warty-looking thingy on his back, and Mom got my brother and I to gang up with her to get him to have a doctor look at it.

            Melanoma stage 3.5 took out a walnut sized specimen for the paths, -> to Cleveland Clinic where they took a slice about half a grapefruit. Looking to get all of the thing, as if they don’t, at the time there were no options. They got it all, but.

            He visited a dermatologist every 3 months, and got little bumps hit with liquid nitrogen. Then sometimes the Dermatologist would draw circles around little rough places, land send him to a plastic surgeon who would take golf-ball pieces out. My dad was blonde and fair, blue-eyed, and after 3 or 4 years of this looked like the winner of many knife fights in dark alleys behind gambling den bars.

            But he beat the melanoma… a fluke rare leukemia got him down, and he beat that too with a clinical trial that worked gangbusters, no side effects, even. But he had traditional chemo to qualify for the clinical trial, and COPD from that old chemo got him years later. But he made it to 81, and died on election day in 2004, after 3 or 4o months in Hospice, with the most beautiful RN doing his home visits that anyone ever saw. An angel, she was.

            I got to be with him the last couple of months straight through, and often in the few months before his final decline. So all that was good. The worst thing was that he lived in Houston TX, which was a terrible place to live, yet had the best cancer treatment center available. So contradictions, too.

            Good luck with your less deadly skin cancers. I’m pretty shy about bumps and such after seeing my Dad AND a co-worker die of melanoma, so I’ve had several things taken off for the paths guys. Keep after every little bump, and you’ll be OK.

            JR

            • tsam

              WOW–your dad is one lucky man. That’s great to hear.

  • Derelict

    I’d love to read the article, but I see that newspaper has decided that the way to boost readership is to prevent people from reading the article.

  • MacK

    Didn’t someone try to blame you for this?

    • Paul Campos

      Yeah that was real classy. Par for the course though.

    • rea

      He appears to have been on the other side of the law school scam controversy from Prof. Campos, but the suggestion that Prof. Campos was involved in the killing is ludicrous. (For one thing, how does Campos, in Colorado, become acquainted with a thug in Florida?)

      • Crusty

        Comment sections?

        • witlesschum

          Objectively despicable ones, for instance.

      • Paul Campos
      • Cassiodorus

        As someone who has him as a professor, I can his attitude toward non-academics mentioned in the post also applied to his students. He may have been the most arrogant person I’ve ever met. That said, people I knew who had closer relationships with him (research assistants, etc.) had nothing but great thing to say about the guy.

        • Matt

          I have no comment about what he was like in class. But, I can say from personal experience, that Dan put a huge amount of energy into connecting people and getting people involved in different projects. When I was a complete nobody (as opposed to a relative nobody) in academic law, he was very happy to invite me to events, make sure I got to take part, help with funding when needed, and so on. He regularly reached out for comments on papers and offered them himself. I know that I’m not alone in that. I was a person who could offer absolutely nothing to him professionally, yet he was always extremely supportive and friendly. He wasn’t someone that I was likely to be close friends with personally (I expect that that feeling was mutual) but nonetheless, all of the above applied. I strongly suspect that those who found him “arrogant” either don’t really understand the meaning of that word, or else were mistaken.

          • Hogan

            I strongly suspect that those who found him “arrogant” either don’t really understand the meaning of that word, or else were mistaken.

            Or maybe they had a different experience from yours.

            • Matt

              Or maybe they had a different experience from yours.

              Maybe! But, my experience is that students are quite often mistaken when they think a professor is “arrogant”, and that wasn’t at all the experience that I and many other people I know (including many people of lower status, such as myself) had. So, I’m pretty hesitant to give the alternative view much credence.

              • You have to distinguish “arrogance” as a character quality from “arrogance” as a behavior quality.

                Students often label, for example, being refuted or corrected, esp. in a somewhat brusque way, as “arrogance”. When working with the nth student who’s made a similar kind of error that would have been avoided if they had read the assignment all the way through, it’s hard to keep away from a tart tone or even a bit of sarcasm, even unintentionally (“It’s really helpful if you read, with care, the assignment all the way through” <–arrogant? or helpful? both?)

                But also, people *can* be very different in different spheres. I know some people who are very kind to undergrads and very harsh to PhD students and vice versa. I can get very frustrated with my MSc students because I think they should know more than my undergraduates, or at least be somewhat more responsible or self starting.

                • Matt

                  I’m pretty much completely happy to agree with this take.

  • I remember a little about this, but not very much. And the newspaper link and Wikipedia article were pretty much useless. Could anyone refresh my memory of why this was a big thing?

    • Denverite

      Seemingly random killing of the law professor who runs probably the most popular legal academic site.

      I’m surprised I haven’t seen speculation that I’d expect to see.

  • ricegol

    Markel was obviously the victim of a targeted hit. the perp did not rob Markel’s person, car or home. there was no confrontation – he shot Markel in the head and took off. when this first happened there were some crazy theories that the killing was the result of some online dispute about the law school scam (Markel was perceived as a law school apologist). then there was another crazy theory that Markel was targeted for revenge by some Orthodox Jews who had been kidnapped in some dispute over religious divorces. (Markel was advising the defense team but almost no one knew about his minimal involvement in the matter, so that theory was pretty much nonsense.

    though people are in denial about it, the only plausible theory was the ex-wife, with whom Markel was in a very ugly and protracted custody dispute. apparently the wife wanted to move from Tallahassee to South Florida, but couldn’t because of an existing custody/visitation order. She made some nasty comments about Markel and her life in Tallahassee online.

    Now does nasty online commentary make you a murderer? by itself, no, but combine that with a very nasty legal battle and an alleged hitman who traveled hundreds of miles from South Florida where the wife had family connections – then you have a theory.

    • rea

      The rabbi case did involve kidnapping and torture for hire, so that connection bears looking at.

    • ajay

      there were some crazy theories that the killing was the result of some online dispute about the law school scam (Markel was perceived as a law school apologist). then there was another crazy theory that Markel was targeted for revenge by some Orthodox Jews who had been kidnapped in some dispute over religious divorces.

      Ah, Florida.

    • Warren Terra

      Markel was obviously the victim of a targeted hit.

      Well, sure, “targeted”, as opposed to a mugging or a spontaneous act – but it’s still surprising that it was (allegedly) a murder-for-hire, rather than some sort of personal animus, which would also have been “targeted”.

      Also: your theory about the ex-wife may be correct, or not, but unless you’re extremely well informed about this affair it really seems irresponsible (not to mention unnecessary) to speculate in this fashion.

      • Julia Grey

        your theory about the ex-wife may be correct, or not, but unless you’re extremely well informed about this affair it really seems irresponsible (not to mention unnecessary) to speculate in this fashion

        Give me a break. Speculation regarding perpetrators and motive is perfectly appropriate when discussing a mysterious murder.

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