In this July post I wondered aloud “How many federal death row prisoners does Attorney General William Barr want to see executed in 2020?”. My main point in that post was that, after the completion of an initial three federal executions that month thanks to SCOTUS lifting lower court stays, it seemed to me that AG Barr would likely be able to have completed how ever many executions he decides to set. Thereafter, the US Justice Department set two more execution dates for August and two more for September, and those executions were completed to bring the 2020 total of federal executions up to seven.
For anyone who might have thought AG Barr would be content with seven execution in 2020, this DOJ press release from late Friday afternoon might have come as a bit of a surprise. This release is titled “Executions Scheduled for Two Federal Inmates Convicted of Heinous Murders” and here are excerpts:
Attorney General William P. Barr today directed the Federal Bureau of Prisons to schedule the executions of two federal death-row inmates, both of whom were convicted of especially heinous murders at least 13 years ago.
- Lisa Montgomery fatally strangled a pregnant woman, Bobbie Jo Stinnett, cut open her body, and kidnapped her baby. In December 2004, as part of a premeditated murder-kidnap scheme, Montgomery drove from her home in Kansas to Stinnett’s home in Missouri, purportedly to purchase a puppy. Once inside the residence, Montgomery attacked and strangled Stinnett—who was eight months pregnant—until the victim lost consciousness. Using a kitchen knife, Montgomery then cut into Stinnett’s abdomen, causing her to regain consciousness. A struggle ensued, and Montgomery strangled Stinnett to death. Montgomery then removed the baby from Stinnett’s body, took the baby with her, and attempted to pass it off as her own. Montgomery subsequently confessed to murdering Stinnett and abducting her child. In October 2007, a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri found Montgomery guilty of federal kidnapping resulting in death, and unanimously recommended a death sentence, which the court imposed…. Montgomery is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on December 8, 2020, at U.S. Penitentiary Terre Haute, Indiana.
- Brandon Bernard and his accomplices brutally murdered two youth ministers, Todd and Stacie Bagley, on a military reservation in 1999. After Todd Bagley agreed to give a ride to several of Bernard’s accomplices, they pointed a gun at him, forced him and Stacie into the trunk of their car, and drove the couple around for hours while attempting to steal their money and pawn Stacie’s wedding ring. While locked in the trunk, the couple spoke with their abductors about God and pleaded for their lives. The abductors eventually parked on the Fort Hood military reservation, where Bernard and another accomplice doused the car with lighter fluid as the couple, still locked in the trunk, sang and prayed. After Stacie said, “Jesus loves you,” and “Jesus, take care of us,” one of the accomplices shot both Todd and Stacie in the head—killing Todd and knocking Stacie unconscious. Bernard then lit the car on fire, killing Stacie through smoke inhalation. In June 2000, a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas found Bernard guilty of, among other offenses, two counts of murder within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States, and unanimously recommended a death sentence…. Bernard is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on December 10, 2020, at U.S. Penitentiary Terre Haute, Indiana. One of his accomplices, Christopher Vialva, was executed for his role in the Bagleys’ murder on September 22, 2020.
Recent prior related posts:
- Justice Department announces the scheduling of four new federal execution dates
- SCOTUS, by 5-4 vote, vacates new injunction that had been blocking scheduled federal executions … UPDATE: execution of Daniel Lewis Lee now completed
- Federal execution déjà vu: after SCOTUS votes 5-4 to vacate injunction, feds complete another morning lethal injection
- Feds, revving up machinery of death, complete third execution of week
- How many federal death row prisoners does Attorney General William Barr want to see executed in 2020?
- Amidst seemingly little attention, federal government seemingly poised to carry out two more executions this week
- Native American death sentence carried out as feds complete record-setting fourth execution of 2020
- Federal government completes its fifth execution of 2020
- Federal government completes its sixth execution in 2020
- Federal government completes its seventh (and final?) execution in 2020