Tavares, Fla. – Vampire cult leader, Rod Ferrell, and his accomplice, Howard Scott Anderson, have been granted a re-sentencing hearing for March 12, 2018. This hearing will be held at the courthouse in Tavares.
The duo was sentenced to life in prison as teenagers following the 1996 murder of Eustis couple, Richard Wendorf, and Ruth Queen. Since that time, the US Supreme Court has ruled juveniles cannot be sentenced to life without parole. The Supreme Court has stated that juveniles brains are not fully developed yet, which may lead to impulsive behavior curbed in adulthood. This ruling has prompted a nationwide chain reaction as courts throughout the country review cases in their jurisdictions which may be affected.
Cult leader Rod Ferrell was 16 when the crimes took place. He was sentenced to death in 1998. This sentence was overturned and reduced to life in prison due to his age at the time of the murders. Howard Scott Anderson, who was 17 when the crime took place, received life in prison without parole following his guilty plea.
Anderson was transferred to the Lake County Jail in Tavares sometime in March 2017, when news of the possible re-sentencing first broke. Anderson will be evaluated by experts in preparation for the hearing, which may grant him the possibility of parole.