State Drops Murder Charge in Hotel Balcony Death

By Jacqueline Fell
Posted Friday, November 06, 2009 1:23:54 AM

State Drops Murder Charge in Hotel Balcony DeathORANGE COUNTY -- The state is dropping all charges against the man accused of pushing his girlfriend over a balcony New Year's Eve.

Mark NeJame, the attorney for Jonathan Speegle, said the murder charge has been dropped.

Speegle was accused of pushing his girlfriend, Nichole Hammond, over a balcony at the Orlando World Center Marriott Resort New Year's Eve.

Hammond fell 16 stories to her death.

The state said after experts reviewed evidence, the case wasn't strong enough.

NeJame said he and Speegle are ecstatic and it was a tearful phone conversation when they got the news.

" He always believed and was always optimistic he would be acquitted,” NeJame said. “We're just glad it happened now and that he did not have to and the family did not have to go through further pain and taking this all the way through to trial.”

NeJame said there were signs of innocence all along.

Speegle was under GPS monitoring while awaiting trial