Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Jacobs Jury Hears Final Arguments; Jurors Will Return Tuesday to Begin Deliberations in the Trial

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Jacobs Jury Hears Final Arguments; Jurors Will Return Tuesday to Begin Deliberations in the Trial

Article excerpt

Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI

WAYCROSS - After hearing closing arguments Friday, jurors in Betty Jacobs' murder trial have gone home to Tift County and will return Tuesday to begin their deliberations.

Chief Superior Court Judge Dwayne Gillis gave the jury the option of deliberating until 8 p.m. Friday but it asked to start fresh at 9 a.m. Tuesday. Gillis agreed but admonished them to not read about or discuss the trial during the three-day holiday weekend.

The eight-woman, four-man jury has been shuttled daily from Tift County for the trial. It has heard a week of contradictory evidence in the case that has focused not on whether Jacobs killed 68-year-old L. Davis Jacobs but why she did it.

Jacobs, now 68, is charged with malice murder, felony murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of crime in the Aug. 24, 2007, shooting. In Georgia, the murder counts carry an automatic sentence of life in prison with eligibility for parole.

On Wednesday, Jacobs testified she shot Davis Jacobs in self-defense when he attacked her with a claw hammer in a rage after she asked him for $100,000 he owed her from their May 2, 2007, divorce settlement.

The couple's two oldest sons, Davis Jacobs Jr. and Scott Jacobs, testified against their mother. They were among a series of prosecution witnesses who said Jacobs physically and emotionally abused her former husband in incidents that included shooting at him once before and frequently pulling a gun on him. She once crashed a car into a mobile home where her husband was living while their then young sons were strapped into the car with her.

A well-known eye doctor, Davis Jacobs died from a bullet to the chest fired at close range from a .38-caliber revolver that he had given his ex-wife as a Christmas gift. A second shot missed him and struck a light fixture.

She testified that Davis Jacobs was violent and often beat her throughout their 43-year-marriage.

Defense attorney John Thigpen, in his final argument, described Davis Jacobs as a real-life "Dr. …

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