(Palm Bay)–A Brevard County jury found a 23-year old man guilty of 2nd degree murder late Tuesday for the 2009 death of Isaiah Marks, 18. Keith Batchelor, (dob 06-30-1988) now faces life in prison for the homicide. Marks body was found in a burning vehicle behind an abandoned home on Santo Domingo Ave. in January 2009. The initial investigation determined the vehicle fire was the result of arson and while the exact cause of death was not determined, Marks was deceased prior to the fire and was mostly likely killed just prior to being discovered.
Detectives spent months investigating the crime before developing enough evidence to conclude that Batchelor committed the murder because of jealousy over a love rival. Repeated interviews with witnesses, cell phone records and other circumstantial evidence put Batchelor near the scene of the homicide at the time it occurred. “The State Attorney’s Office did an excellent and thorough job presenting all the elements of this case to the jury,” said Detective Ernie Diebel who spent 18 months working on the case.
“No one else could have committed the crime and prosecutors were able to prove that Batchelor was the only one with the motive, the opportunity and the ability to carry it out.”The jury also found Batchelor guilty of arson, false imprisonment, and improper disposal of a body. “Detective Diebel did an outstanding job with a very difficult case,” said Chief Doug Muldoon. “His persistence with the interviews and following the evidence is what delivered a successful conclusion and removed a dangerous individual from society.”
Batchelor will be sentenced in September.