Dentist found guilty of beating girlfriend's 19-month-old son to death and trying to get her killed before start of trial
The dentist was seen on home surveillance video slamming the toddler’s head to the ground and kicking him
A Tulsa-based dentist was found guilty of first-degree murder and soliciting murder by an Oklahoma County jury.
Back in 2016, Bert Franklin was charged for the murder of a toddler and soliciting a hit on the kid's biological mother. After sitting through two weeks of detailed witness testimony, the jury carefully reviewed the evidence presented to them for both cases against the horror dentist.
The subject of the trial is the torture and subsequent killing of Lincoln Lewis, who is the son of Roxanne Randall, Franklin's girlfriend. According to reports, the jury had to determine if the dentist knowingly and willfully hurled the innocent child to the ground or kicked him in the head. Little Lincoln sustained fatal injuries to the head after the incident.
As the date for Franklin's murder trial inched closer each day, he wanted to get the infant's mother out of the way. The jury had to also decide if Franklin had arranged a hit-job on his own girlfriend.
However, Scott Adams, the attorney representing Franklin, said the doctor neither had the desire to have his girlfriend murdered nor did he want to kill the helpless child. Instead, he recommended to the jury to let his client go home scot-free instead of sending him to prison.
“The jury’s verdict of life without parole and life on top of that,” said Gayland Geiger, Oklahoma Co. District Attorney’s Office. “I anticipate Judge Truong to stack those sentences together and Mr. Franklin does not ever need to be released again.”
Authorities said that Franklin was seen on home surveillance video slamming the toddler’s head to the ground and kicking him. Later, he appeared to be carrying the limp boy as he headed to the kitchen for a slice of pizza, according to New York Post. The dad-of-four reportedly dated Randall for about a year while he was still married.
Randall, the embattled mother, sent KFOR a statement following the guilty verdict about the ordeal she suffered for over two years.
"A little over two years ago I woke up to the most horrific tragedy a mother or parent could imagine. My baby was dying in my arms, and I didn’t know why. His abuser was hiding in plain sight, and the last person I or anyone else would suspect," she wrote. "Lincoln was a perfect baby and from day one, had to fight to survive. He courageously fought and won his preemie battle, only to have his life cut short at 18 months old, and by someone who claimed to love him. The day he was born, I begged God to heal him and let him stay. I promised to love him, unconditionally, for the rest of our lives."
In her statement, she mentioned that she "wholeheartedly" believed her son would still be alive "if the people that had knowledge of Bert Franklin’s abusive behaviors would have reported him. This should serve as a reminder that abusers aren’t always easily identifiable. They often hide among us as successful people and loving fathers."
The grieving mother had earlier revealed that her boyfriend hated Lincoln's biological father and had even threatened to take his life, "skin him in Bricktown" and then cut off his genitals, Fox 25 reports.
Franklin's sentencing is scheduled for October 19.