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Donald Lee BRADLEY





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Murder for hire - To collect insurance money
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: November 7, 1995
Date of arrest: September 14, 1996
Date of birth: July 4, 1960
Victim profile: Jack Jones
Method of murder: Beating with a  “war stick” and a gun
LocationClay County, Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on June 25, 1998

Supreme Court of Florida

opinion SC93373

DC# 066600
DOB: 07/04/60

Fourth Judicial Circuit, Clay County, Case #96-1277
Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Peter Dearing
Trial Attorney: Alan Chipperfield – Assistant Public Defender 
Attorney, Direct Appeal: Nada M. Carey – Assistant Public Defender
Attorney, Collateral Appeals: Richard Kuritz – Registry

Date of Offenses: 09/01/95 - 11/07/95

Date of Sentence: 06/25/98         

Circumstances of Offense:

Donald Bradley, the defendant, was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of Jack Jones on 11/07/95.

Linda Jones, wife of the victim, became distressed and infuriated upon learning her husband was having an affair with Carrie Davis, a teenager she had befriended and brought into their home.  Linda Jones, after many unsuccessful attempts to break up the affair, propositioned Donald Bradley to intimidate Davis and assault her husband.

At the request of Mrs. Jones, Bradley and three of his employees went to Davis’ apartment on 10/31/95 to retrieve a diamond ring that Mr. Jones had given his young lover.  When Davis would not answer the door, Bradley ordered his employees to vandalize the girl’s car.

Mrs. Jones then solicited Bradley to assault Mr. Jones and the two conjured up a plan to make the attack look like a home invasion.  Bradley enlisted the help of Brian and Patrick McWhite, two of the employees that had previously helped vandalize Davis’ car. 

While picking up the brothers on 11/07/95, Bradley instructed Patrick to get a large “zulu war stick” to use on Mr. Jones during the attack.  According to trial testimony, the brothers agreed to help assault Mr. Jones for $100 each, but that Bradley never mentioned killing him. 

Prior to the arranged burglary, Bradley had many telephone conversations with Mrs. Jones in which she informed him of the location of Mr. Jones’ gun and that both the front and side doors would be left unlocked. 

On the evening of 11/07/95, when Mr. Jones saw the McWhite brothers enter his home, he ordered them to leave.  When they refused, a physical altercation ensued.  Bradley began an unyielding assault on Mr. Jones with the “war stick” and a gun. 

At one point, the McWhite brothers taped Mr. Jones hands and feet and pulled him into another room.  Mr. Jones pleaded for the beating to stop, but Bradley continued.  Bradley tried to shoot Mr. Jones in the head, but the gun malfunctioned.  Mr. Jones died from the injuries he suffered in the beating.

During the episode, Mrs. Jones watched without emotion as her husband was severely beaten.  Bradley taped her hands as well to make the scene look more believable.  When the men left, she called 911.  Patrick McWhite’s fingerprints were lifted from the scene, which led to his arrest, and eventually to the arrest of his brother, Bradley and Mrs. Jones.

Evidence presented at trial indicated that Mrs. Jones tried to solicit two other men to kill her husband prior to contacting Bradley.  When Mrs. Jones received the life insurance money from her husband’s death, Bradley expected a payoff of $100,000-$200,000.

Codefendant Information:

Linda Jones was convicted of First-Degree Murder and sentenced to life in prison.  She was also convicted of two counts of Solicitation to Commit Murder and one count of Conspiracy to Commit Murder. Each of the three charges carried a 13-year sentence.

Brian and Patrick McWhite both pled to Third-Degree Murder and were sentenced to 10 years each.

Trial Summary:

09/14/96          Defendant arrested.

09/26/96          Defendant indicted on:

Count I:           First-Degree Murder

Count II:          Armed Burglary

Count III:         Conspiracy to Commit Murder

05/22/98          The jury found the defendant guilty on all counts.

05/29/98          Upon advisory sentencing, the jury, by a 10 to 2 majority, voted for the death penalty.

06/25/98          The defendant was sentenced as followed:

Count I:           First-Degree Murder - Death

Count II:          Armed Burglary – 30 years

Count III:         Conspiracy to Commit Murder – 30 years

Case Information: 

Bradley filed a Direct Appeal in the Florida Supreme Court on 07/06/90.  In that appeal, he argued that there was insufficient evidence to support a First-Degree, Premeditated Murder conviction and insufficient evidence for a felony-murder conviction.  Bradley argued that the court erred in allowing testimony regarding the 10/31/95 vandalization of Davis’ car; as such evidence was irrelevant to any material issue. 

He also contended that Detective Redmond’s out-of-court statement that Bradley had his van detailed five times since the murder should have not been admitted as evidence.  The Florida Supreme Court affirmed the convictions and sentence of death on 03/01/01, and the mandate was issued on 07/05/01.

Bradley next filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court on 09/04/01 which was denied on 11/26/01.

On 11/14/02, Bradley filed a 3.850 Motion in the State Circuit Court, and on 09/14/05, 11/14/05, and 05/25/06, Evidentiary Hearings were held.  The motion is currently pending.



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