April 25, 1990 |
The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a condemned killer can gain his wish and be put to death without having his case appealed. But this 7-2 ruling has only minimal impact, since Arkansas is the only state which does not require that a death sentence automatically be reviewed by its highest state court. On Dec. 28, 1987, Ronald Gene Simmons went on a rampage in Russellville, Ark., randomly shooting and killing two persons and wounding three others.
March 28, 1998 |
Under darkening skies that mirrored this town's emotions, Jonesboro began burying its dead Friday--two little girls who were among the victims of a shooting rampage at their own school. The funerals--the first of five to be held for those who died Tuesday, gave voice to the grieving of a community racked with pain and anger.
January 6, 1988 |
The gun used to kill two people in Russellville last week is the same gun used around Christmas to kill one of 14 family members found dead at a home in rural Pope County, officials said Tuesday. The development is the first announced finding of physical evidence that links R. Gene Simmons, 47, to the deaths of his family members, although authorities have said he is the only suspect in their deaths.
January 3, 1988
Mourners of the 14 relatives police say were killed by R. Gene Simmons attended a memorial service in Russellville, Ark., for victims of America's worst family mass murder. The Rev. Royce Savage told 300 people gathered at the First Assembly of God Church that the killings left many fundamental questions unanswered. "Everybody wants to know why this, why them, why here and why that many," he said.
March 26, 1998 |
It was all so sudden, so random and unexpected. And yet it seemed to follow a familiar pattern, seemed to obey the rules of a strange new ritual emerging here in the rural South. For the third time in five months, it happened this way: First, students were inexplicably gunned down at the one place thought to be a sanctuary within the community, the local school. Then, frantic parents made a mad dash for the schoolyard, a frantic media horde hot on their heels.
June 12, 1999 |
The state of Arkansas will be able to keep the two Jonesboro school snipers in custody past their 18th birthdays after buying a former county prison, officials said. By taking over the former juvenile facility in southeast Arkansas, the state will be able to fulfill its legal requirement to keep the boys separate from younger offenders when they turn 18, but not send them to an adult prison.