MARTINEZ -- He murdered two people in ambush, he's put forth no real defense while representing himself at trial, and he could be sentenced to death.
Still, convicted Richmond-San Rafael Bridge toll plaza killer says he has "no regrets" because, quoting crooner Frank Sinatra, "I did it my way."
"I'm walking the plank. It's my plank to walk. I don't want anyone pushing me, guiding me or holding my hand," Nathan Burris said Thursday in his closing argument before a Contra Costa jury began deliberating whether he should be sentenced to death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.
"My life has been really interesting. I love it, and I'm actually interested in what's going to happen down the road," Burris said.
The jury convicted Burris last week of two counts of first-degree murder and special circumstances for the Aug. 11, 2009, shotgun killings of Caltrans toll taker Deborah Ann Ross and Golden Gate Transit bus driver Ersie "Chuckie" Everette. He was motivated by a suspicion that Ross, 51, of Richmond and Everette, 58, of San Leandro, had become romantically involved after Ross broke up with him. He believes he was justified and says he has no remorse.
"I'd do it again," Burris said.
Chief Assistant District Attorney Harold Jewett asked jurors on Thursday to recommend the harshest punishment under state law for the 49-year-old Richmond man based on the circumstances surrounding the "cold and calculated"
Burris, whose favorite phrase at trial was "So what?," said he's not afraid to get a needle in his arm in California, where capital punishment is "a joke," and he would expect to live another 30 to 40 years comfortably while an execution date would be held up by appeals.
"If I was in Texas, I'd be terrified," Burris said, laughing. "California is not real. The death penalty means nothing to me but time to hang out and do what I'm going to do."
Jewett told jurors not to consider the current state or the potential future of the death penalty in California.
"I ask you to just do your job, and let other people do theirs," Jewett said.
Jurors in death penalty trials are asked to weigh aggravating factors -- like prior criminal history, the cruelty of an offense -- against mitigating ones in determining whether a defendant deserves a death sentence. Burris has no past felony convictions, but he did confess on the witness stand to robbing three San Francisco Walgreens stores at gunpoint in the mid-1990s.
Jewett said contrary to Burris' statements, and his laughing and mocking throughout the trial, he believes Burris is afraid of a death sentence.
"Don't misunderstand what we've seen here for some mental disorder or defect," Jewett said. "He's just a psychopathic killer."
"The evidence of aggravation here is overwhelming, and the evidence of mitigation is nonexistent," Jewett said.
Jurors deliberated for about two hours Thursday before going home. They resume deliberations Monday morning.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.