An Oklahoma-based dentist was convicted Thursday of fatally beating his girlfriend’s 19-month-old son and arranging for the woman’s murder while behind bars.
KFOR reported that Bert Franklin was found guilty of the first-degree murder of Lincoln Lewis and soliciting the murder of Roxanne Randall, his girlfriend and the slain boy’s mother. A home surveillance camera apparently caught Franklin throwing and kicking the child, causing the head injury that killed him.
According to KJRH, Randall told investigators that Franklin was alone with the baby on the night in question when she heard a loud noise. Randall claimed she asked Franklin what the noise was and he claimed that it was him throwing a small ball to the puppy.
A surveillance camera located downstairs told a different story.
Footage showed Lewis kicking and throwing an indistinguishable figure seconds before he’s seen holding a lifeless toddler. While prosecutors argued that Franklin was beating Lewis, defense attorneys maintained that their client was kicking the dog, according to KFOR.
Lewis died shortly after the violent beating. An autopsy revealed that he sustained two large skull fractures, retinal hemorrhaging to both eyes, and subdural and subarachnoid hematomas.
KJRH reported Randall also told investigators that Franklin made comments suggesting hatred towards Lewis’ father. Franklin allegedly hid his marriage and four children from Randall.
Franklin was also convicted of hiring someone to have Randall killed while awaiting trial in Oklahoma County jail. Calls made from a phone smuggled into the jail were presented in court.
In addition to the guilty verdicts, the jury recommended life in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for October 19.