The man who killed 11 people at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh in 2018 was convicted Friday of all 63 charges against him, The Washington Post reports.

The charges against Robert G. Bowers, 50, included 11 counts of hate crimes resulting death and 11 counts of obstruction of free exercise of religious beliefs resulting in death. The guilty verdict marks the conclusion of the first part of the trial; a jury will now determine whether Bowers will be sentenced to death or life in prison.

Bowers had pleaded not guilty to all charges against him. He had offered offered to plead guilty in exchange for avoiding the death penalty, but prosecutors rejected the deal. 

A lawyer for Bowers did not immediately return Rolling Stone‘s request for comment. A rep for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania said they had no comment.

Bowers killed 11 and wounded seven at the Tree of Life Synagogue on Oct. 27, 2018, in what officials have called the worst antisemitic attack in American history. During opening statements, prosecutor Soo Song said Bowers used multiple weapons during the shooting, including an AR-15 assault rifle.

She also said that after Bowers had been apprehended, police had asked him why he did it. Song said Bowers “blurted out, ‘All Jews need to die.’ ‘Jews are killing our kids.’ ‘Jews are bringing immigrants and killing our people and committing genocide.’ And, ‘Jews are the children of Satan.’”

During the trial, Bowers’ defense attorney, Judy Clarke, focused not on Bowers’ guilt in committing the crimes — “There is no disagreement, no dispute and there will be no doubt who shot and killed the 11 congregants,” she said — but instead on his “motive and intent.”

Clarke did argue that Bowers was not motivated by hatred of Jews. Rather, she said, Bowers feared that congregants at the Tree of Life were helping immigrants, whom he believed were a threat. Another member of Bowers’ defense team, Elia Long, acknowledged during closing arguments that “none of this is true,” but said, “It is what Mr. Bowers believed to be true.”


Additionally, as part of their ostensible effort to help Bowers avoid the death penalty, his defense team has filed motions stating he suffered from schizophrenia and epilepsy. The prosecution was allowed to have their own psychiatrist evaluate Bowers before the trial began, but the findings are still confidential. 

The second phase of the trial is set to begin June 26 and could last up to six weeks.