Sunday, March 15, 2009

February 12, 2009

...Something in my head was just saying, 'Kill, kill, kill,'....

Last Meal: Johnson, 51, had a final meal request of four pieces of fried chicken breast, two chicken fried steaks, 20 fried shrimps, four fried eggs with no yoke, two golden brown biscuits with butter and honey, two gallons of black coffee with cream and sugar and two hand size pieces of peanut brittle candy.

Prison spokeswoman Michelle Lyons said the request would be honored if the requested items were available in the prison kitchen.

The skinny: Johnson was executed for the 1995 rape-slaying of a woman in Houston.

Authorities said this was among three he committed during a month long spree of violence some 14 years ago.

More skinny: Johnson confessed that he offered to give the victim some of his crack cocaine in exchange for sex. After the woman smoked the crack, she refused to have sex with Johnson. He became angry and grabbed her, ripped her clothes off, and threw her to the ground. When she fought back with a wooden board, Johnson repeatedly struck her head against the cement curb until she stopped fighting, and then raped her. "Something in my head was just saying, 'Kill, kill, kill,'" he said in his confession.

Records also show he left his wallet behind, returned to retrieve it, raped the dying woman again before picking up his wallet and leaving with the victim's boots.

Then he got a beer.

During the punishment phase of his trial, the State introduced evidence, including Johnson’s oral and written confessions, revealing that Johnson raped and/or murdered numerous other women on several occasions in much the same manner. The former truck and taxi driver who also was linked to at least eight other rapes in Houston and Austin starting in the late 1970s.

Last words and such: In a lengthy statement that made no mention of his crimes, Johnson denounced the Texas death penalty, calling Livingston’s Allan Polunsky Unit, home of the state’s death row, “a dungeon.” “Death row is full of isolated hearts and suppressed minds,” said Johnson as a small group of friends and relatives he asked to witness his death stifled sobs. “The Polunsky dungeon should be compared with the Death Row Community as existing not living. Why do I say this, the Death Row is full of isolated hearts and suppressed minds. We are filled with love looking for affection and a way to understand. I am a Death Row resident of the Polunsky dungeon. Why does my heart ache. We want pleasure love and satisfaction. It. The walls of darkness crushed in on me. Life without meaning is life without purpose. But the solace within the Polunsky dungeon, the unforgiveness within society, the church Pastors and Christians. It is terrifying. Does anyone care or who I am. Can you feel me people. The Polunsky dungeon is what I call the pit of hopelessness. The terrfying thing is the US is the only place, country that is the only civilized country that is free that says it will stop murder and enable justice. I ask each of you to lift up your voices to demand an end to the Death Penalty. If we live, we live to the Lord. If we die we die to the Lord. Christ rose again, in Jesus name. Bye Aunt Helen, Luise, Joanna and to all the rest of yall. You may proceed Warden. "See y'all in heaven," he told some friends who watched him through a window, then began singing a hymn. “Jesus, keep me near the cross. … There’s a bright and shining.”

Eight minutes later, he was pronounced dead.

Factoids: Johnson was the

13th murderer executed in U.S. in 2009
1149th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
8th murderer executed in Texas in 2009
431st murderer executed in Texas since 1976

February 12, 2009

Last Meal: Bradley, 49, had no final meal request. He had two fried egg sandwiches for breakfast and a snack during the day.

The skinny: Bradley was executed for the rape and strangulation of his 12-year-old stepdaughter.

More skinny: The victim and her younger brother were left in the care of their stepfather, Danny Joe Bradley. The mother of the children had been hospitalized for more than one week.

At approximately 8:00 p.m., the three were watching television. The victim was lying on the couch and asked her brother to wake her if she fell asleep so that she could move to the bedroom. When the brother decided to go to bed, Bradley told him not to wake the girl but to leave her on the couch. Bradley also told the boy to go to sleep in the room normally occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Bradley instead of his own bedroom.

The boy claimed that he had fallen asleep and that when he awoke, the victim was gone. Her body was found the next day in woods near Bradley's apartment. She had been raped, sodomized and strangled to death.

When he discovered her "missing," Bradley went to his in-laws, then to the next door neighbor, before going to the hospital. He claimed to police that he had not left the house before discovering her missing, but was witnessed by a police officer near where the body was eventually discovered. Her brother later testified that Bradley had frequently rendered the children unconscious by squeezing their necks. Fiber evidence from Bradley's home and trunk was also consistent with clothing and bedding fibers from the victim.

Previous: In 2001, the Alabama Supreme Court granted Bradley a stay only a week before his scheduled execution to allow DNA testing of bedding items. The victim's DNA and Bradley's DNA were mixed on a blanket that was on the girl's bed, according to court records. However, some critical evidence has been lost, including the rape kit and semen-stained clothing.

Last words and such: Bradley was given a lethal injection at 6:15 p.m. after spending 25 years on Alabama’s death row. He had no final statement.

Factoids: Bradley was the...

12th murderer executed in U.S. in 2009
1148th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
2nd murderer executed in Alabama in 2009
40th murderer executed in Alabama since 1976

Alabama has 207 inmates on death row, including four women.