JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The family of a cab driver murdered during a robbery in 2014 said their emotional wounds were ripped open Thursday when they learned from a news report that their loved one's killer will be resentenced.
Rohbanni Wilson was convicted of first-degree murder, armed robbery and possession of a firearm by convicted felon in the 2014 murder of taxi driver Stuart Carson, 43, who was a father of four and had one grandchild.
Wilson was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences plus 15 years.
The First District Court of Appeals has affirmed his convictions, but threw out the sentences, saying the trial judge did not have the discretion to make them consecutive.
Carson's widow and sister said they've known about every move Wilson has made since being arrested and that the state attorney not letting them know about the resentencing was a slap in the face.
“We don't know what happened. We found out about it this week and that's why I have a family that's upset about it,” said Lori Gilkinson, Carson's sister. “We feel we should have been notified by the State Attorney's Office.”
Gilkinson said she doesn't understand how the judge who sentenced Wilson wasn't within his rights to make the sentences consecutive.
Carson's widow, Kelly Carson, was in court for every step of Wilson's conviction and sentencing. She said she'd hoped never to have see Wilson's face again.
“Only because that was the last face my husband saw before he died,” Kelly Carson said. “That's what makes it hard.”
Gilkinson said knowing they'll have to be back in court for Wilson's resentencing has reopened wounds that had begun to heal.
“The kids had been doing better. We all were slowly healing, and this just opens it all up,” she said.
Carson's widow also said that she's more concerned for her children than anything.
“I feel worse for my kids. It's more about my kids then it is about me. It always has been,” Kelly Carson said. “My kids don't get to go see their dad, and that's what is very upsetting.”
David Chapman, spokesman for the State Attorney's Office, released a statement Friday, explaining that despite Wilson's resentencing, he will still serve a mandatory term of life in prison without parole for Carson's murder.
"We have been in contact with the victim’s family this afternoon to reassure them that Wilson will never be released from prison," Chapman said.
Cab driver slain
According to police, Carson was sitting in his Gator City Taxi cab on West 27th Street at about 7:45 a.m. June 7, 2014, when he was shot and killed.
Prosecutors said Wilson shot and killed Carson, then reached into his left pants pocket to take the cash Carson had collected from fares. He left behind his DNA in Carson's pocket.
Prosecutors also said a gun matching the one used to shoot and kill Carson was found in the apartment where Wilson lived. It had been disassembled and hidden inside an oven mitt. Wilson's cellphone was also found disassembled in the apartment.
Prosecutors also said that in the days after the murder, Wilson tried to cover his tracks and told a friend to lie for him and provide him with an alibi.
Wilson has been brought back to the Duval County Jail for an Aug. 28 resentencing hearing.