Collins Found Guilty Of Murder: Sentenced To Life In Prison - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Collins Found Guilty Of Murder: Sentenced To Life In Prison

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Bay County, Fla. -

A murder trial that spanned the entire week went deep into Friday evening, as a jury deliberated over the fate of Tanner Collins.

The 25-year old Southport man was accused of shooting Steven Gulck in November of 2010. Just before 7 tonight, the verdict came in.

Collins was found guilty on three charges - First degree murder, robbery, and burglary of a dwelling.

Judge Brantley Clark immediately sentenced Collins to life in prison.

The day started with 14th Circuit medical examiner Dr. Michael Hunter taking the stand. He demonstrated to the jury that Gulck was killed by two gunshot wounds to the back and abdomen.

Later, both the state attorney and defense attorney gave lengthy closing arguments in the case. The state argued that not only did it have evidence against Collins, but three witnesses also placed Collins behind the gun.

The defense attempted to poke holes in that argument, saying that witnesses weren't credible. Defense Attorney Russell Ramey asked the jury to go with a lesser manslaughter charge. The jury instead went with first degree murder.

After the emotional verdict, Gulck's family says they feel justice was done.

"I think that the verdict was fair," said Renee Baxter, Gluck's sister. "I think that everybody gave their best efforts, and I think justice was served.

"I hope and pray that god watches over Tanner," she added.

Collins will be credited 722 days for time served. He has 30 days to appeal his sentence.