Jane Bashara was found dead on January 25, 2012, in the back of her vehicle the day after her husband Bob Bashara reported her missing. According to ClickonDetroit, an autopsy revealed that she had been strangled to death. Authorities said during the investigation that they believed Jane Bashara was murdered in her house and her body was then moved to her vehicle.
In March 2012, Bashara’s handyman Joe Gentz was charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder after he told police that Bashara paid him to murder his wife. Bashara was then arrested and also accused of trying to have Gentz murdered behind bars, a charge to which he pleaded guilty in October 2012, ClickonDetroit reported.
Bashara’s murder trial for the death of his wife began two years later, in October 2014, and concluded in December 2014. Where is Bob Bashara today?
Bashara Was Found Guilty & Sentenced to Life in Prison in January 2015 & He Died in Prison on August 17, 2020
Following his wife’s murder in 2012, Bashara was charged with first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, solicitation to commit murder, witness intimidation and obstruction of justice and he was convicted after a lengthy trial in 2014 that involved over 70 witnesses, ClickonDetroit wrote. In January 2015, he received a sentence of life in prison.
Bashara died on Monday, August 17, 2020, at an Ann Arbor area hospital where he had been hospitalized since July 26, the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) confirmed to Detroit News. The inmate, who was 62 years old at the time of his death, had been suffering from liver problems and was on dialysis, Jane Bashara’s great aunt told the outlet.
A spokesperson for the MDOC said they could not release Bashara’s cause of death due to privacy laws: “I cannot talk about the cause of death due to HIPAA, but in case you were wondering if it was COVID, I can’t say that due to the same privacy law but I can tell you that there were no positive cases at the prison he was at.”
Bashara Appealed His Verdict But Was Unsuccessful & the State Supreme Court Denied Hearing His Appeal
Bashara filed an appeal in September 2017 and the Court of Appeals upheld his murder conviction after hearing the case. His attorneys then appealed to the Supreme Court of Michigan, which declined to hear his appeal in May 2018. In May 2019, his legal team decided to turn to the federal courts to review his verdict.
The petition filed by his attorneys claimed that Bashara was being unlawfully detained by his correctional facility, which was his only legal recourse left, according to The Detroit News. “Mr. Bashara has exhausted all state remedies available to him,” the filing read, adding that his trial was negatively affected by media coverage and poor legal assistance and that some essential pieces of evidence were not reported to the defense in time.
It’s unclear if the federal courts had ruled on his case at the time of Bashara’s death in 2020. Larry Dubin, a law professor at the University of Detroit-Mercy said federal filings like Bashara’s were rarely successful: “In general, it’s a tough sell, where you have the issues litigated through the trial and appellate courts of the state, to get relief granted in the federal courts. But it’s the only legal recourse that available for him to take.”