Donna Adelson arrested attempting to flee country, justice watchers fired up

Donna’s arrest is a game-changer.

Less than 12 hours after news broke of Donna Adelson’s arrest — as she and Harvey Adelson attempted to flee Miami with one-way tickets to Vietnam — the internet has reacted with a flurry of content, memes, and videos documenting global gratitude for law enforcement’s unyielding efforts to bring those responsible for Dan Markel’s murder to justice.

Tallahassee Democrat investigative reporter Jeff Burlew’s coverage of the arrest depicts the baffling arrogance or stupidity of Markel’s former in-laws, who seemed to think that skipping town to a non-extradition country before a possible grand jury indictment would go unnoticed.

Authorities have long named Donna as a co-conspirator in Markel’s murder, along with her daughter, Wendi Adelson — Markel’s ex-wife and the mother of his two sons, and Charlie Adelson, Wendi’s brother. These members of the Adelson family, law enforcement say, conspired with one another to hire three accomplices to carry out the July 18, 2014, killing.

“Wendi Adelson would talk to her mother and brother, her brother would meet with and talk with his ex-girlfriend Katherine Magbanua, and Katherine Magbanua would meet with Sigfredo Garcia and Luis Rivera,” read an Oct. 6, 2023 motion by the State, describing how the conspiracy was structured.

Donna’s arrest came one week after Charlie Adelson’s conviction. Here’s what the internet has to say about it:

— Surviving the Survivor Podcast: This dynamic team was on air last night as news came in, with a vibrant live chat. Expect more from them and their followers in the days ahead.

— Fanci Fiction: It’s hard to pick just one, but for a biting perspective, follow this link to Fanci’s X, or find her on YouTube for wiretaps, commentary, and more.

— Jury Trial Mentor: The YouTube chat is already live, with legal commentary by trial attorney Carl Steinbeck set to start at 10 a.m. Tuesday. Steinbeck is batting 1000 in his predictions for how Charlie’s trial would go, such as whether Katie would testify, how long the jury would deliberate for, and more.

— Society Page: Sharp, artistic take on Charlie’s trial, Wendi’s subterfuge, and Donna’s arrest.

— Reddit: Dan_Markel_Murder sub is lighting up.

Donna’s arrest is a game-changer in a case brought by the State Attorney’s Office in a methodical, yearslong effort to deliver justice, and marks another step toward the innermost “layer” of the crime.

“I suspect that Wendi may be preparing to express shock and horror at what her family did, but in actuality, Wendi took great measures to conceal the truth of who killed Ben and Lincoln’s loving father,” said Karen Cyphers of Justice for Dan. “She provided misdirection during her one and only police interview, hung up on law enforcement, plead the fifth a few hundred times in a defense deposition, fought hard to avoid testifying and then lied under oath in three trials when forced to appear, led investigators down bizarre rabbit holes, and isolated Dan’s children away from the Markel family for years on end. If Wendi attempts to turn on her family now that Donna has been arrested, perhaps this is Charlie’s chance to provide receipts — if he has them — about his sister’s involvement in the conspiracy.”

Or there’s always an extra, unclaimed one-way ticket to Vietnam.


Florida Politics provides ongoing coverage of the Markel murder case, which is drawing international media attention to Florida’s capital city. Our reporting draws from sources including contributor Karen Cyphers of Sachs Media, who, with attorney Jason Solomon, advocates with the grassroots group “Justice for Dan” to draw attention to the case and provide analysis relevant to Florida’s political, advocacy, and legal communities.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


  • The Grand Mar-a-Lardo

    November 14, 2023 at 12:18 pm

    What a dumb twunt.

  • jim diorio

    November 14, 2023 at 1:10 pm

    Great story Pete but I think Jury Trial Mentor is at 10PM, not AM?

  • Earl Pitts "The Big Voice On The Right" American

    November 14, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    The world always delays reaction to the “BIG NEWS” and holds back as everyone knows it’s not officially “NEWS” until Earl Pitts American, “WEIGHS IN” on the subjects and “Sets The Tone” on how they should feel, who they should hate, and who they should love”.
    Sorry, “WORLD” to keep you waiting – but I would just like to remind you that I, Earl Pitts American, have a life too. And if my favorite assistant, Miss Rolex, has some special needs that only a man with a high libido and a highly developed and repetitave “Love Jones” can take care of … well guess what America? I’m gonna take care of some business !!!
    Good Afternoon Dook 4 Brains Lefty’s and also good afternoon to you Dook 4 Brains RINO’s,
    I, Earl Pitts American, know how you Dook 4 Brains have been thrilled with following this trial. It’s got many elements which just made y’all feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
    1.) The legal aspect has got y’alls ♥ ‘s all a-twitter (not the now known X platform kind of Twitter) with fake Redemption thoughts of “See we do prosecute crimes you Patriot’s got us all wrong” And honestly you all are internally inside your dark hearts going “Na Na Ne Na Na Na “see rightwingers who accuse us Dook 4 Brains of being soft on crime…. we will prosecute the “HE””DOUBLE HOCKY STICKS” out of some crime!!!!
    *disclaimer “as long as it’s not B on B crime”.


    HAD this been a B on B crime:
    1.) It would have been closed out and swept under the rug approximately 1 year after Dan took his last breath.
    2.) The crime involves a HAMAS style gunning down of “a member of the Tribe and of One of God’s Children. (Which is leaving you Dook 4 Brains all joyfully giddy inside your dark satinic hearts and souls).
    Y’all are so wrong,

  • Katie

    November 14, 2023 at 3:22 pm

    Wait so did Harvey head to Vietnam alone? Haven’t heard anything about him???

Comments are closed.


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