ALABAMA (USA): WALTER LEROY MOODY JR, 83, EXECUTED
April 19, 2018:
Walter Leroy Moody Jr, 83, White, was executed, making him the oldest known person put to death since capital punishment was reinstated in 1977. (Source: Reuters malverngazette.co.uk, 19/04/2018)
Moody was put to death by lethal injection at the William C. Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore and gave no final statement, prison officials said.
He was convicted of a deadly 1989 serial bombing spree, resulting in the December 16 1989 slaying of a federal judge in 1989. The victim was Judge Robert S Vance, 58, a member of the Atlanta-based 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals.
The explosion ripped through the home near Birmingham, killing Mr Vance instantly and severely injuring his wife, Helen. Prosecutors said Moody, who had attended law school, had a grudge against the legal system because the 11th Circuit refused to overturn a 1972 pipe-bomb possession conviction that prevented him from practising law. Authorities said Moody mailed out a total of four package bombs in December 1989. A device linked to Moody killed Robert E Robinson, a black civil rights lawyer from Savannah, Georgia. Two other mail bombs were later intercepted and defused, including one at an NAACP office in Jacksonville, Florida.
Authorities said those bombs were meant to make investigators think the crimes were racially motivated. Moody was first convicted in 1991 in federal court and sentenced to seven life terms plus 400 years. He was later convicted in state court in 1996 and sentenced to death for Mr Vance’s murder. Moody had always maintained his innocence, claiming he was the innocent victim of a government conspiracy. Moody's execution highlighted ageing U.S. death row populations that have led states to put to death 10 inmates age 70 or older since 2006, including Moody.
Moody becomes the 2nd person to be put to death this year in Alabama, the 63rd executed in Alabama since the state resumed capital punishment in 1983, the 8th prisoner put to death this year in the U.S., and the 1,473rd in the United States since USA resumed executions in 1977.