February 23, 2000 |
The Supreme Court on a 5-4 vote cleared the way Tuesday for the electrocution of an Alabama murderer, despite his lawyer's claim that this "antiquated" method of execution is both horribly cruel and now unusual. Alabama is one of only three states that still uses the electric chair, and it soon may stand alone. Most states, including California, use lethal injections to carry out the death penalty. Georgia and Nebraska also still rely on the electric chair.
January 16, 1999 |
In one of his final acts in office, Gov. Forrest "Fob" James Jr. commuted the death sentence of a woman convicted of killing a 13-year-old girl who was injected with drain cleaner, shot and thrown into a canyon. James gave no reason for commuting 34-year-old Judith Ann Neelley's sentence to life in prison. Neelley was convicted of the 1982 sex-torture killing of Lisa Ann Millican.
June 9, 1997 |
After 16 years of proclaiming his innocence, a former Ku Klux Klansman confessed to killing a black teenager, according to a minister who met with the death row inmate before he was executed. The Rev. Bob Smith mentioned the confession at Henry Francis Hays' funeral. Hays, 42, was executed in Alabama's electric chair early Friday for the 1981 slaying. Smith said Hays offered a tearful 40-minute account of 19-year-old Michael Donald's abduction, beating and strangulation.
June 6, 1997 |
Gov. Fob James refused to block the execution in Atmore, Ala., early today of Henry Francis Hays, a member of the Ku Klux Klan who killed a 19-year-old black man in a case that ultimately bankrupted the United Klans of America, the klan faction that had incited the crime. Hays, 42, was convicted in the 1981 slaying of Michael Donald, who was abducted from a Mobile street. Prosecutors said the random slaying was ordered by klan leaders "to show klan strength in Alabama."
March 22, 1992 |
A man who hired two men to kill his pregnant wife was executed early Friday in Alabama's electric chair after he prayed and asked her family for forgiveness. "If this is what it takes for there to be healing in their lives, so be it," said Larry Gene Heath. Heath, 40, made no final attempt to appeal his sentence for the 1981 slaying of Rebecca Heath, who was nine months pregnant.
November 17, 1989 |
Arthur James Julius, turning both thumbs up as a "goodby to the world," was executed early today in Alabama's electric chair for raping and murdering his cousin while free on an eight-hour pass from prison in 1978. Julius, 42, died almost nonchalantly at 12:21 a.m. inside the Holman Prison execution chamber, wearing a white sweat suit, flip-flop sandals and a purple ribbon given to him by an anti-capital punishment group.