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Convicted killer wants 50-year sentence thrown out, shot at a trial

A convicted killer wants his prison time cut in half.

Christopher Serna took a plea deal for killing his girlfriend, Suzanne Bishop, at North Naples apartments in 2011. Now, he believes his lawyers didn’t act in his best interest.

Serna murdered and decapitated his girlfriend nearly a decade ago and is serving a 50-year sentence. He appealed on Wednesday to have his plea deal thrown out, but the state rejected his lawyer’s argument.

“The evidence was so gruesome,” defense attorney Ana Davide recalled.

Bishop’s horrifying murder rocked the entire county.

“The photos depicted about 125 stab wounds that the appellant inflicted on his victim,” said Nina Scherach, the Office of the Attorney General of Florida. “Her decapitated head at his hands, and her head impaled with a rod.”

Serna’s current attorney argued to the appeals court his client wanted to go to trial, didn’t take his medication the morning he accepted a plea deal of 50 years in prison and blames his lawyers at the time.

“The defendant’s mental health issues attributed to his inability to take a plea in this case intelligently and that his rights were violated to full, especially because he didn’t take his medication,” Davide said.

It’s now up to a group of judge to decide if Serna will get a new trial. There is no timeline as to when the appellate judges will reach their decision.

“He had no questions for the court or for his attorneys, and that even though he had not had his medication, that lack of medication did not affect his ability to understand,” Scherach said. “The State does not believe that this appellant would have forgone this plea and decided to go to trial.”

Reporter:Rachel Cox-Rosen
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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