Jury Finds Jason Beckman Guilty of First-Degree Murder in Killing of South Miami Commissioner Father

Son facing life in prison in shooting death of father

Jurors on Monday found Jason Beckman guilty of first-degree murder in the 2009 shooting death of his politician father, in a killing prosecutors said was calculated and premeditated.

Jurors began deliberating late Monday afternoon in the case of Beckman, 21, who claimed that he unintentionally shot his father Jay Beckman, a South Miami city commissioner.

But jurors sided with prosecutors, convicting the son in a decision that came down at about 8 p.m.

The defendant wrinkled his nose when the verdict was announced. Moments later he shook his head from side to side.

“I don’t understand,” Beckman said as the jury rose to leave the courtroom. “I really don’t.”

He was originally charged with manslaughter with a firearm after he told police that he had just wanted to show the gun to his father, but he slipped and fell causing the gun to fire. The charges were upgraded to first-degree murder after friends and family came forward saying the then-17-year-old had talked of killing his father.

A search of the son's belongings showed the former South Miami High junior had compiled a hit list of enemies, with his dad's name on the top, authorities said.

During the trial, a neighbor testified that Jason Beckman showed her the shotgun he would use to kill his dad, the Miami Herald reported. A fellow inmate also testified that the teen shot his dad after the elder Beckman made a joke about actress Megan Fox.

Jay Beckman said his son "wouldn't know what to do with that," in talking about Fox, the Herald reported.

Defense attorneys argued that Jason Beckman didn't shoot the gun intentionally. Police said Jason Beckman told them he was showing his father the gun when he slipped and fell, causing it to go off.

After the verdict was read, Beckman was handcuffed, signed paperwork and had his fingerprints taken.

He faces between 25 years and life in prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set.

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