Nearly six years after the death of former Washington safety Sean Taylor, a 23-year-old man has been convicted of second-degree murder in the case.
A jury has found Eric Rivera Jr. guilty of both second-degree murder and armed burglary in the death of Taylor, which court testimony indicates was the result of a botched attempt to steal cash from Taylor’s home.
Rivera, who was 17 at the time of the killing, could be sentenced to life in prison.
Although police said Rivera confessed to shooting Taylor days after Taylor’s death on November 27, 2007, he later claimed the confession was coerced. In his confession, Rivera said he and four others planned to go to Taylor’s home and steal from him, believing Taylor kept more than $100,000 in cash in his house, and also thinking he would be playing in a game at Tampa Bay at the time. Taylor was actually recuperating from a knee injury and did not go to Tampa.
Three of the other men Rivera implicated in his confession are still awaiting trial. A fourth pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and burglary and was sentenced to 29 years in prison.