A consecutive prisoner died in Texas that he was trying to forgive his victims' family moments before he was executed through a fatal injection.
John Gardner, 64, was sentenced to death in 2006 for his estranged wife shooting unsightly a year earlier, who said she often said she did not expect friends to resign from their abusive marriage.
In the early days of their marriage in 1999, Tammy Gardner began showing physical signs of abuse, such as pressure, anxiety and depression, said prosecutors.
Her friends described one case in which she had a black eye after her husband had swung into a bookcase. In another, great pressure was put on her after attacking her with a hammer, according to court documents. The friends and relatives indicated that he had previously possessed a gun.
She is believed to have filed a divorce in 2004. About a month later, she asked a colleague to help her “go away” to track her.
Later that night, her husband came to her house and she shot it once in the head. She died in hospital two days later.
The next day Gardner threw himself into police in Mississippi. Evidence from the crime truck borrowed from his brother law was obtained from the crime scene.
He used his brother-in-law gun too, said prosecutors, who returned shortly afterwards. The authorities found that the .44 magnet returned under its mattress had been worn with one shell.
On Wednesday, Gardner was the first man executed in the United States in 2020.
“I hope you will find peace, joy and closure,” he said before he died, and pleaded with his victim's family. “Whatever it takes me to forgive me. I'm sorry. I know I can not forgive me but I hope one day you will. ”
He was given a lethal dose of pentobarbital in Texas's death room in Huntsville at 6.20am and was declared dead 16 minutes later.
While jurors were deciding whether to impose a sentence or death in prison, Gardner's sister indicated that their parents had committed violent abuse as a child. According to local media, his father, a baptismal preacher, frequently preached the sermons to beat Gardner in public.
It seems that his wife Tammy was not originally killed by Gardner. In 1983, he was convicted of aggravated assault for his pregnant wife, Rhoda, who died as a result of her injuries. Of his four daughters, it is alleged that he was abusive on three, the Texas Tribune reported.
Texas has executed more people than any other state. Seven people have so far been scheduled to be completed in 2020, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.
In July, the Trump administration moved to reposition the death penalty for federal crimes, 16 years after its abolition. Five people were immediately killed by the Department of Justice.
However, in November, US district judge, Tanya Chutkan, inhibited the imposition of a capital penalty on federal crimes, on the basis that it violated the Federal Death Penalty Act.
Additional reporting by Reuters
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