Verdict Reached In Dave Hawk Case - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Dave Hawk Found Guilty In Ex-Wife's Murder

Posted: Updated: Aug 28, 2009 03:48 PM PDT

51-year old Dave Hawk is facing life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The jury deliberated for three days, and found Hawk guilty of first degree murder, with the special circumstance of murder for financial gain.

The jury also found Hawk guilty of ten financial crimes.

They include tax evasion, embezzling money from his kids' trust funds, and perjury.

"We the jury find the defendant David Martin Hawk guilty of the murder of Debbie Hawk."

And with that verdict, on this 28th day of August, nearly 12-hundred days since the dissapearance of his ex-wife Debbie... Dave Hawk is convicted for her murder.

We the jury find it to be true that the murder of Debbie Hawk was intentionally and was carried out for financial gain.

Hawk showed no emotion as the guilty verdicts were read one after another.

The conviction comes three days after a Kings County jury began deliberating.

33-year old Kenny Knutson served as the jury foreman.

"When the verdict was being read, I wasn't really paying attention to him. What got me was the reaction of his daughter and that got to me. It was very emotional," Knutson says.

17-year old Chelsea began sobbing when the jury found her father guilty of murdering her mother.

"For me, the deciding factor was the fact that his youngest daughter had seen him a month beforehand driving by the house, taking pictures of the house.  My opinion is, if you have been divorced for over 10-years, why would you be driving past the house taking pictures?" said juror, Dee Reed.

Chelsea, visibly upset, walked out of the courtoom without speaking to reporters.

Hanford Police Chief Carlos Mestas says the guilty verdict brings closure to the investigation.

"This one does bring closure somewhat, it's been weighing heavily on my mind for over three years," he says.

But could the jury have reached a different decision?

Juror number # 7 Dee Reed says, in her opinion, the defense could have done more.

"They could have presented more character witnesses in favor of Mr. Hawk, things like that might have been able to change my mind, but I think they did poorly," she says.

Debbie Hawk dissapeared from her home in Hanford three years ago.

Her body has never been found, but according to the jury, the man who  murdered her has now been found.

Debbie's close friends did not miss a day in court and always wore purple in Debbie's memory, left the courtroom and handed KMPH a note, written on a purple piece of paper.

It's a color the friends chose for Debbie because it's a rich, royal and regal color. They say it's the perfect color to represent their friend.

It reads...

"Debbie was taken from all who loved her, 1,174 days ago.  My promise for justice was kept today.  My heartfelt thanks to all who devoted countless hours to give Debbie her day in court.  Thank you to those who continue to look for her.  Your efforts haven't gone unnoticed.  Debbie is gone from sight, not from our hearts."

Sentencing is set for December, at which point, Hawk's attorneys say they will appeal the verdict on grounds that the case should have been tried outside Kings County because of pre-trial publicity.

You can sound-off on this verdict over on our Community Correspondent Page.

Stay with KMPH and as we continue to follow this story.



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