Lake County judge to decide if Joseph Thomas should get death penalty in Annie McSween murder

CLEVELAND - Jurors have unanimously agreed the death penalty is an appropriate sentence for a man convicted of killing a Mentor-on-the-Lake bartender two years ago. On Monday, a judge will make the final decision.

Joseph Thomas was recently convicted of killing Annie McSween, being found guilty of aggravated murder, rape, kidnapping and more in connection to her violent death.

McSween, 49, was found dead on Nov. 26, 2010 behind Mario's Lakeway Lounge on Andrews Road where she worked. The Lake County Coroner's office said she died from multiple stab wounds.

Months after McSween's death, her daughter, Erica, died of an accidental drug overdose at her Mentor home.

Thomas continues to claim he's innocent. If he is sentenced to die, an automatic appeal will be filed.

Thomas is scheduled to be sentenced at 3 p.m. on Monday by Judge Collins in Lake County Common Pleas Court.

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