Alabama executes oldest inmate in modern history

83-Year-Old Man Sentenced To Death By Alabama Court
Walter Moody
Author

21 April, 2018

Authorities said Moody sent the bomb to the judge out of anger over a 1972 bomb conviction that ended his law career and the others to confuse police into thinking the bombs were sent by a white supremacist. Authorities would later say they believed Moody had picked some of his targets to try to make them believe racism or hate groups were involved.

Inmate, 83, is executed in death of federal...

"I'm not a psychiatrist, but if you're talking about using labels like psychopath, this seems to be the kind of person that would fit that description because of absolute lack of empathy or concern for others", Mr Vance said.

The execution began at 8:16 p.m. and Moody's time of death was declared at 8:42 p.m., according to officials.

At his 1996 trial, prosecutors described Moody as a meticulous coward who killed Vance with murder by mail because of his obsession with getting revenge on the legal system, and then committed additional package bombings to make it look like the Ku Klux Klan was behind the judge's murder.

Moody was pronounced dead Thursday night inside a south Alabama prison, ending a generations-long legal drama that began in 1972, when he planned a bombing against an automobile dealer who had repossessed his vehicle.

Moody is the oldest person put to death since the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty in 1976, according to figures compiled by the Death Penalty Information Center. He became the oldest inmate executed in the United States since the return of executions in the 1970s.

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Earlier this year, the group's records show, Georgia executed a 67-year-old death row inmate. His attorneys have not raised his age in legal filings, but have argued in a clemency petition to Alabama's governor that his age and health would complicate the lethal injection procedure. Officials intercepted a device that was sent to the 11th Circuit's offices in Atlanta, as well as a bomb that was mailed to a Florida office of the NAACP.

The inmate, who maintains his innocence, was also found guilty of planting another explosive that killed civil rights lawyer Robert Robinson two days later.

"The point to emphasize is my Dad was personally opposed to the death penalty but always made clear that his personal feelings had to give way to the law", Vance said. The nation's high court had no comment on those last-minute appeals Thursday.

Vance told the outlet that he has made peace with his father's death but did not attend the execution.

Alabama state attorneys had argued that the federal government had agreed to the transfer.

Mr Vance's son, Robert Vance Jr, now a circuit judge in Jefferson County and Democratic candidate for chief justice in Alabama, said it is important that people remember how his father lived, not just how he died. Vance's son said his father opposed the death penalty personally, but also believed in following the law. Moody's appeals finally came to a rightful end.


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