death penalty news----S.C., FLA., OKLA., NEB., ARIZ., US MIL.
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Rick Halperin
2017-11-20 15:42:47 UTC
Nov. 20

SOUTH CAROLINA----impending execution

Dec. 1 chosen as date for 1st South Carolina execution in 6 years

On Dec. 1, for the 1st time since 2011 according to information available on
the South Carolina Department of Corrections website, the state will put
someone to death, the Associated Press reports.

Bobby Wayne Stone, age 52, will be executed for the 1996 murder of Sumter
County sheriff's Sgt. Charlie Kubala, the AP reports, also saying that Stone
confessed to shooting Kubala, but claimed it was an accident.

He was convicted of murder, 1st degree burglary and a firearms provision and
sentenced to death in 1997, according to Department of Corrections documents.
He has been awaiting execution ever since.

The murder occurred, according South Carolina Supreme Court documents, when a
woman heard gunshots from her back yard and called her neighbor, who came over
and called police. Stone had been drinking and wandering the woods around the
woman's home firing 2 newly purchased firearms, and had already approached her
home once before, leaving when asked, but after police had already been called.

Kubala was the officer that responded to that 1st call according to court
documents, and returned when the second call was placed. When he arrived, Stone
was on the side porch of the woman's home, banging on her door while holding a
pistol. Kubala went around the side of the home, and from inside the woman and
her neighbor heard someone yell "halt" or "hold it."

They then immediately heard 3 or 4 gunshots, according to court documents.

Kubala was shot twice, court documents reveal. Once in the neck and once in the
ear. He died at the scene.

Stone was sentenced to death in 1997 according to The Sumter Item. That
sentence was overturned in 2002. Then that reversal was itself reversed in

South Carolina uses lethal injection to perform executions, The Sumter Item
reports, using a blend of 3 drugs in the process, whereas some states have
switched to using just 1. Those facing the death penalty can also opt to die by
electrocution, The Item notes.

The most executions performed by the state in any 10 year period was 68, which
happened between 1931 and 1940. The most performed in the last 20 years was in
1998, when 7 people were put to death, according to the Department of

Stone's most recent request for appeal was denied by the state's Supreme Court
on March 29, 2017, according to court documents.

(source: islandpacket.com)


Sentencing phase begins in trial of Adam Matos, found guilty in murder of 4

The sentencing phase begins Monday in the trial of Adam Matos, convicted Friday
of 1st degree murder in the deaths of his ex-girlfriend, her parents and her
new bofriend.

Assistant State Attorney Chris LaBruzzo said prosecutors will proceed with
plans to seek the death penalty. If the jury recommends death, the law now
requires a unanimous decision.

Family members of the victims will be able to address the jury during the
sentencing phase.

Matos had stunned trial spectators Wednesday by confessing from the witness
stand. His attorneys wanted to put him back on the stand Thursday, but
Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Mary Handsel said the additional questions weren't

Matos was found guilty of shooting to death ex-girlfriend Megan Brown, 27, and
her father, Greg Brown, 52, and of beating to death Megan Brown's boyfriend,
Nick Leonard, 37, and her mother Margaret Brown, 52.

(source: Tampa Bay Times)


Death penalty case postponed until February

The jury trial for a man charged in a double-murder case is postponed until
February to give the defense more time to prepare, but prosecutors say they are
still seeking the death penalty in the case.

The trial for Craig Stanford, accused of killing Aaron Lavers and Anthony
Rogers inside their residence located in the 100 block of A Street NW on May
17, 2016 was once again continued. Stanford faces charges of double-murder and
is now expected to go to trial in February. No other cases went to trial during
the November jury term.

Stanford faces charges that include a Bill of Particulars which allows the
prosecution to seek the death penalty in the event of a conviction.

"It has been continued at the request of the defense over my objection,"
District Attorney Craig Ladd said. "The defense claims it needed more time to
adequately prepare. I still intend to seek the death penalty in the case."

Ladd said that before a jury can impose a sentence of death, it is required to
find the existence of an "aggravating circumstance" in a 2nd stage of the

Prior to seeking the death penalty, Oklahoma law requires that the prosecution
file a "Bill of Particulars" specifying which aggravating circumstance the
prosecutor believes makes the case death penalty eligible.

Ladd said the Stanford trial would be the 2nd case in which he has sought the
death penalty. In the 1st, the jury found the existence of an aggravating
circumstance but sentenced the defendant to life without parole.

The lack of jury trials, though notable, is not all that uncommon.

"A majority of our cases are resolved by plea agreements. This practice is true
statewide. In some instances, the defendant enters a 'blind plea' and his/her
sentence is decided exclusively by the judge," Ladd said. "Blind pleas are
entered when the defendant admits guilt but feels the prosecutor's plea offer
is too punitive."

Ladd said his office files more than 2,000 criminal cases per year in Carter
County, making the plea agreement process a necessity due to a lack of

"A typical jury trial takes about 2-3 days on the average and we only have 2
courtrooms in the courthouse that include jury rooms. If we decided to enter no
plea agreements, then there is simply not near enough time to have full-fledged
trials on each of the matters," Ladd said. "Plea agreements can be custom
tailored to fit different situations. If a victim has incurred expenses as a
result of crime, for example, then the payment of restitution would be included
in the agreement. In cases which involved homicide or some sort of felonious
assault, we typically confer with the victims and/or the victims' families and
seek their blessings before making a plea offer."

Ladd said the number of trials his office requests can vary from one docket to
the next.

"We've had dockets in the past 2 years where we conducted as many as 8 jury
trials in a 2-week period and some jurors were required to serve on 3 jury
trials," Ladd said.

The previous jury term had 3 cases go to trial, two cases were for manslaughter
and 1 was for assault and battery with a deadly weapon. The May docket had 3
jury trials as well, 2 cases of manslaughter and 1 for felony DUI.

(source: The Daily Ardmoreite)


University of Nebraska professors investigate support of death penalty

The majority of citizens in the United States still support the death penalty,
but the amount of people who support the punishment has decreased in past
years, according to research studied by University of Nebraska professors.

Criminology and criminal justice professor Amy Anderson from the University of
Nebraska Omaha and professor of sociology Philip Schwadel from the University
of Nebraska-Lincoln worked together to analyze the demographics of people who
support the death penalty and to find out why the amount of support has

The professors looked over data collected in the past decades by the General
Social Survey. They discovered the demographics of a person can influence their
opinion. Crime rates also affect whether a person supports the death penalty.

In the 1980s and 1990s during the American crack epidemic more people supported
the death penalty, according to the data analyzed.

Additionally, research showed an individual's religion, political affiliation,
gender or race can also affect their opinion. Catholics were less likely to
support the punishment compared to non-Catholics, and males were more likely to
support the death penalty.

The white population was the most favorable for the death penalty, and
Republicans showed more support than non-Republicans.

Anderson and Schwadel also discovered that age affects people's opinion of the
death penalty. People who are younger were not as supportive. Middle-aged
people tended to be more so, until ages 50-55 when individuals became less
supportive of the punishment.

"There's a hypothesis that as you get older, you become more conservative,"
Anderson said in a Nebraska Today press release. "This suggests that's true to
a certain age, and then it trends back down."

According to a Nebraska Today news release, the researchers thought middle-aged
people were more likely to support the death penalty because of their ethics
and their desire to protect their families.

"We found robust age effects, but not generational effects," Schwadel said in a
Nebraska Today press release. "Generation doesn't matter a lot, but age and
time period matter a lot."

(source: dailynebraskan.com)


Who are the women on death row in Arizona?

There are currently 3 women on death row in Arizona, and 1 woman who was

Sammantha Allen was sentenced to death August in the killing of her 10-year-old
cousin, Ame Deal. Her husband, John Allen, was also sentenced to death on
Thursday, making Sammantha and John the first couple in the state to be sent to
death row, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections.

Allen is the 4th woman to be sentenced to death in Arizona. She joins Wendi
Andriano and Shawna Forde, who are currently on death row. The Arizona State
Prison Complex - Perryville is where female death row inmates are housed.

Eva Dugan

Crime: January 1927

Executed: February 21, 1930

Dugan was found guilty of killing Arthur Mathis, a rancher near Tucson.

Dugan grew up a frontierswoman, floating from town to town for work. She met
Mathis in Tucson, and he hired her immediately to work as his housekeeper. The
Prescott Courier from May 1979 implies the relationship was a kind of

A young man named Jack moved in with Mathis and Dugan, then Mathis was never
seen again. Dugan and Jack skipped town.

Dugan and Jack sold Mathis' car in Amarillo, Texas, the Pima County Sheriff
discovered. Dugan was tracked to New York and arrested for grand larceny.

Months later, a man bought some land near the Mathis ranch. He was driving
stakes for a tent when he discovered a shallow grave. The red-headed remains
were identified as Arthur Mathis.

Dugan was sentenced to death.

"If I was a flapper with pretty legs, I never would have been convicted and
given the death penalty," she reportedly said.

Dugan was hanged February 21, 1930. When the gallows trap sprang, her body fell
and she was decapitated.

The scene caused 5 people to faint.

Dugan's gruesome death lead to capital punishment reform in Arizona. A year
after the horrific incident, Arizona stopped executions by hanging and began
using the gas chamber.

Wendi Andriano

Crime: October 8, 2000

Andriano was found guilty of 1st-degree murder in the killing of her husband. A
jury found Adriano had killed her husband, Joe Andriano, by beating him with a
barstool and slitting his throat.

Joe Andriano had been diagnosed with a terminal illness when Wendi Andriano was
pregnant with their 2nd child.

The night of Oct. 7, 2000, Wendi called 911 in the early-morning hours to get
Joe medical help. She called a coworker in her apartment complex to help watch
the kids. The coworker said he saw Joe lying on the floor in the living room.
He was in the fetal position, vomiting and weak.

When paramedics arrived, Wendi sent them away, saying Joe was dying of cancer
and had a do-not-resuscitate order. Paramedics left.

Andriano called 911 again at 3:39 a.m. Paramedics found Andriano in a bloody
shirt, and Joe dead on the floor. There was a bloody barstool nearby. Joe had
fatal head injuries and a stab wound to his neck.

The medical examiner determined Joe had been hit on the head at least 23 times.
He also had sodium azide, a pesticide, in his system.

Andriano claimed she had tried to help Joe take his own life, and when the
assisted suicide attempt failed, the two fought. Andriano said she hit Joe with
a barstool in self defense.

Andriano was sentenced to death. She is appealing. She filed a federal habeas
corpus appeal in April 2016.

Shawna Forde

Crime: May 30, 2009

Forde was found guilty in the 1st-degree murders of Raul and Brisenia Flores.

Forde, a rogue Minutemen leader on the Arizona border, burst into the Flores
home in Arivaca, Arizona, in the middle of the night along with Jason Eugene
Bush and Albert Robert Gaxiola.

Dressed in camouflage, Forde, Bush and Gaxiola claimed to be agents looking for
fugitives. They took jewelry, then shot Raul Flores, his daughter, 9-year-old
Brisenia, and his wife, Gina Gonzales.

Gonzales survived the attack by pretending to be dead. Gonzales was calling 911
when the intruders came back. Gonzales fired a shotgun at them, wounding Bush.

Evidence showed Forde planned the attack, though Bush pulled the trigger. Both
Forde and Bush were sentenced to death.

Sammantha Allen

Crime: July 12, 2011

Allen was found guilty in the killing of 10-year-old Ame Deal.

Sammantha and John Allen lived in a home near Broadway Road at 35th Avenue with
Ame Deal and many others.

Ame faced severe abuse in the home, court documents said.

Deal died after she was locked in a plastic box that was left outside overnight
in the Arizona summer. Deal was being punished for taking a popsicle. She died
of suffocation and heat, according to court documents.

Sammantha Allen was sentenced to death. John Allen was later also sentenced to
death in November.

(source: KVOA news)


US army doctor arrested for 'raping' 9-month-old daughter

In what is being termed as the most shocking crime, a US army doctor has been
accused of raping one of his twin daughters before strangling her to death.

Officer named Christopher Paul Conway, 22, was charged with aggravated rape and
homicide after his 9-month-old daughter was rushed to hospital with injuries
consistent with being raped, the Sun reported.

Police were called to a property at 7.19am on Tuesday, November 14, to help
administer CPR to the child. But shortly after she was taken to Tennova Health
Care, she was pronounced dead at 8am.

Detectives now believe the child was sexually assaulted before a cord was
wrapped around her neck, strangling her to death.

His bail was set at $100,000 for the rape charge, but he was denied bail for
the homicide charge. If found guilty, he could face the death penalty.

Conway allegedly confessed to police, admitting to raping and killing his
daughter. Jim Knoll, of the Clarksville Police Department said: 'The father was
charged with the crime of criminal homicide and aggravated rape and has been
booked into the Montgomery County Jail.' The girl's twin sister has since been
removed from the home and placed in foster care.

According to his Facebook page, Conway is married and is a doctor in the US

Conway is due to appear in court on November 21.

(source: arynews.tv)

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