Tuesday, July 20, 2004

July 19, 2004

...a bad man...

Last Meal:  Crawford was served regular prison fare of barbecue pork, black-eyed peas, a vegetable medley, cole slaw, a roll, peach cobbler and a grape drink. He did not eat any of it.

The skinny:  Crawford, 57, was executed for the 1983 kidnapping, raping and murdering his 2-year-old niece.

Crawford claims he blacked out after drinking and doesn't remember what happened.

Prosecutors argued at trial he sneaked into the house and kidnapped the girl after her mother--his sister-in-law--refused to have sex with him.

Legal machinations:  Several defense attorneys lined up to appeal Crawford's case. They've been seeking DNA testing of two newly discovered hairs found on the girl's body and clothing to determine if they belong to Crawford or someone else.

Similar pleas caused the Georgia Supreme Court to delay Crawford's execution just three hours before he was originally scheduled to be killed last December.

State courts have ruled additional DNA testing inadmissible on four occasions because Crawford still would have been found guilty, said Spalding County District Attorney Bill McBroom.

The U.S. Supreme Court didn't stop the execution Monday, although three of the court's more liberal members supported giving Crawford a stay to conduct DNA testing of hairs found on the girl's body.

Crawford was linked to the crime by hair and carpet fibers found on the girl's body, eyewitness statements and conflicting accounts he gave to police.
Last words and such:  In his final words, Crawford said, "There hasn't been a time in the last 21 years I wouldn't have laid down my life for little Leslie. I don't remember anything. But if this will give them peace, it [the lethal injection] was well worth it."

Factoids:  Crawford was the....
34th murderer executed in U.S. in 2004
919th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
2nd murderer executed in Georgia in 2004
36th murderer executed in Georgia since 1976