A Sacramento Superior Court jury today convicted Robert Neal-Anderson of second-degree murder in the Oct. 2, 2009, stabbing death of David Maxey in the victim's South Natomas apartment.
The jury deliberated for more than two days before reaching its verdict this afternoon around 3:30. Neal-Anderson could have been convicted of first-degree felony murder for killing Maxey during the course of a break-in. But one member of the jury who asked to remain anonymous said a small number of panelists "couldn't get their head around it."
Evidence at the trial showed Maxey, a 60-year-old retired hairdresser, and Neal-Anderson knew each other and had argued with a few hours before the killing took place.
Deputy District Attorney Charles Gonzalez suggested in his closing argument last week that Neal-Anderson broke into Maxey's apartment on Stonecreek Drive at West El Camino Avenue to steal the victim's hydrocodone pills that were found scattered on the floor.
Defense attorney Emory King said Neal-Anderson, 35, killed in self-defense after Maxey splashed bleach in the defendant's eyes during a dispute over a drug debt.