23 September 2005 :John W. Peoples Jr., a man convicted of killing a family of three and driving off in their vintage sports car, was executed by lethal injection. Peoples, 48, died at 6:27 pm at Holman Prison near Atmore, prison officials said. Peoples was convicted in 1983 in the killing of Pell City businessman Paul G. Franklin, his wife, Judy Choron Franklin, both 34, and their 10-year-old son, Paul. Peoples did not look at or offer an apology to relatives of the Franklins, but thanked his own family for their support. The Franklins' relatives said they were relieved that Peoples was dead, but were surprised at his apparent lack of remorse.
``Seemed a lot easier on him the way he died versus the way they died,'' said Bill Choron, the slain woman's brother.
The execution was carried out after the Supreme Court denied Peoples' request for a delay and Gov. Bob Riley turned down his bid for clemency. Peoples argued in his plea that he had a right to die by electrocution, as his original death sentence stipulated, instead of lethal injection, a method Alabama adopted beginning in 2002. The state, in its response to the Supreme Court, said Peoples missed the deadline to request the electric chair.
The boy and his mother were beaten to death with a rifle, but the father's body was too decomposed by the time he was found for investigators to determine the cause of death. Prosecutors say Peoples killed the three because he wanted their 1968 red Corvette, and he was arrested after attempting to sell the car shortly after the killings. Peoples was the fourth death row inmate to die this year and the tenth since the state switched to lethal injection