Trial opens for man accused of killing Tampa cop

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — A Tampa prosecutor says a man pistol-whipped a police officer who tried to stop him and then killed him with a gunshot as he lay motionless on the ground.

The graphic description of the Aug. 2009 slaying of Tampa Cpl. Mike Roberts came during opening statements in Humberto Delgado’s first-degree murder trial Friday. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Prosecutor Karen Stanley told the jury that after Delgado was caught, he was heard saying how the officer deserved it because he had stopped Delgado on the street and went through his belongings.

Assistant Public Defender Christopher Watson said Delgado, who is from the U.S. Virgin Islands, was mentally ill and paranoid. He also suggested that evidence linking Delgado to the crime is lacking.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

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