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Accused killer gets life without parole

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Valentine Russ who was arrested in February for the shooting of another man at a Brooksville residence has been convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, according to Hernando County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) Spokesperson Denise Moloney. Russ will also serve life in prison with parole for armed robbery of a dwelling, she said.

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On Feb. 9, HCSO deputies responded to a report of a shooting at a residence on Robb Road in Brooksville.
Upon arrival they found one adult on the ground and an adult male standing in the yard holding a firearm. The following day, deputies arrested the man found at the scene holding the firearm and charged him with premeditated first-degree murder.

At the time of the incident, Moloney said that the incident appeared to be domestic in nature.
Russ was booked into the Hernando County Detention Center. He was also charged with armed burglary with a firearm.
Russ went on trial for the charges in June, and on June 9, a jury found him guilty on both charges after 35 minutes of deliberation, Moloney said.
On Aug. 25, Russ was sentenced to life in prison, without the possibility of parole for the murder charge and life in prison, without the possibility of parole, for the armed burglary charge.

Following the trial, several members of the victim’s family expressed their gratitude to the HSCO detectives who handled the case.
“Both for their diligent efforts throughout the investigation and for maintaining open lines of communication with them as the investigation progressed,” Moloney said.

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