Defense Attorneys Fight Man's Death Wish

Lawyers for accused child-killer Jeffrey Voss said they will fight his request for the death penalty in what's being called a one-of-a-kind case.

Some defendants have waived their right of appeal after the death penalty was imposed, but no one can recall a case where the defendant wanted to plead guilty and ask for the death penalty.

Voss has asked the state to impose the death penalty on him, and he's written a letter stating such to the one lawyer who is publicly committed to making it happen -- Marion County prosecuting attorney Carl Brizzi.

Bob Hill, Jeffrey Voss' attorney

"I'm opposed to any client participating in what we would call a state-assisted suicide like this," Voss' defense attorney Bob Hill said.

In the letter to Brizzi, Voss said his lawyers have repeatedly blocked his effort to plead guilty in the death penalty case.

"Any defendant has the Constitutional right to plead guilty and accept the full consequences of his actions just as much as they have a Constitutional right to plead not guilty," Brizzi said.

Voss has repeatedly admitted that he abducted Christina Tedder, 12, on Christmas Eve 0f 2004. Five days later, Voss led investigators to a creek bed in rural Hancock County, where they found Tedder's body. An autopsy revealed the girl had been tortured, raped and strangled.

Tedder's mother, Michelle, told RTV6's Jack Rinehart she believes Voss deserves no less than death.

"Every day of my life, I cry over my daughter. It's hard for me to move on with life. I fake my way through life trying to deal with this,"

Voss said he will submit to a psychological evaluation to prove his competency to make the decision. It isn't likely his lawyers will let him plead guilty even if he wants to.

"Death is irrevocable. Once executed, we can't do anything as a justice system to protect him or have any sort of do-over," Hill said.

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