The first execution of a prisoner in the US in 67 years has ended

MISSION, Kan. (AP) – A judge granted residency to the first execution by the U.S. government in nearly seven decades of a prisoner – a Kansas woman who killed her pregnant mother in Missouri, separated her baby from the womb, and the newborn died.

The Topeka Capital Journal reported that Judge Patrick Hanlon issued a residency permit late Monday, citing the need to assess Montgomery’s intellectual competence. Lisa Montgomery was executed Tuesday at the Federal Correctional Complex in Terre Haute, Indiana, just eight Days before President-elect Joe Biden, an opponent of the federal death penalty, takes office.

She drove Montgomery about 173.59 kilometers from her home in Milfern, Kansas, to the town of Skidmore, northwest Missouri, under the guise of adopting a terrier puppy from Bobby Joe Stennett, a 23-year-old dog breeder. She strangled Stennett with a rope before she had a simple caesarean section and ran away with the baby.

She was arrested the next day after showing off premature baby Victoria Joe, who is now 1

Is 6 years old and has not spoken publicly about the tragedy.

Randy Strong, who was part of the main theme in Northwest Missouri at the time, recalls, “As we were crossing the threshold, our amber alarm was on the TV at that moment.”

He looked to the right to see Montgomery holding the newborn and was relieved when I turned it over to law enforcement. The past hours had been a blur as he photographed Stenett’s body and spent a sleepless night looking for clues – unsure whether the baby was dead or alive and had no idea what it looked like.

But then advice came about Montgomery, who had faked pregnancies in the past and suddenly had a baby. Stark, now the sheriff of Nodaway County, where the murder took place, jumped into an unmarked car with another officer. During his trip he learned that the email address [email protected]used in preparation for the fatal meeting with Stenet was sent from a phone call to Montgomery’s home.

“I just knew I was going to the killer’s house,” recalls Strong, saying that the rat dogs circled around his feet as he approached their house. Like Stinnett, Montgomery raised rat dogs.

Bobby Jo Stennett’s mother, Becky Harper, cried when she told a Missouri employee that she stumbled on her daughter in a pool of blood, opened her womb, and lost the baby she was carrying.

“It’s like it exploded or something,” Harper told the dispatcher on December 16, 2004 during a desperate and futile attempt to get her daughter’s help.

Prosecutors said her motive was that Stennett’s ex-husband knew she had undergone a tube ligature that made her sterile and planned to reveal that she had lied about the pregnancy in order to get custody of two of her four children gain. Since she needed a child ahead of the upcoming court date, Montgomery focused on Stennett, whom she met at dog shows.

However, Montgomery attorneys argued that sexual assault in Montgomery’s childhood led to mental illness. Attorney Kelly Henry spoke out in favor of Monday’s decision and said in a statement to the Capital Journal: “Mrs. Montgomery suffers from brain damage and severe mental illness, compounded by the sexual torture carried out by her caregivers.

Her stepfather denied the sexual assault in videotaped statements and said he had poor memory when he came across a copy of the divorce proceedings in which he confessed to physical abuse. Her mother testified that she did not file a complaint with the police because he threatened her and her children.

But the jury that investigated the case and yelled at some of them by the terrible testimony ignored the defense in their conviction for the kidnapping that led to their death.

Prosecutors argued that Stennett regained consciousness and tried to defend himself when Montgomery cut the baby out of the womb with a kitchen knife. Later that day, Montgomery called her husband to pick her up at Long John Silvers’ parking lot in Topeka, Kansas and told him she gave birth to the baby earlier in the day at a nearby birthing center.

She eventually confessed, and the rope and blood-stained knife that killed Stennett were found in her car. A search of her computer revealed that she was using it to look for c-section deliveries and ordered a delivery kit.

Zeb, Stennett’s husband, told the jury that his world “collapsed to the end” when he learned that his wife had died. He said he had not returned to the couple’s home in Skidmore, a small farming community previously found after the Ken Rex McIlroy community murder in 1981, in front of a crowd who refused to involve the killer or killers, in months. had become famous. This crime is recorded in a book, In Broad Daylight, as well as a television movie, No Mercy and the miniseries Nobody Saw Nothing.

Recently, on Victoria Joe’s birthday, he sent a message to the sheriff on Facebook Messenger thanking him.

“I just cried,” Strong recalls. “He’s constantly being reminded whether in his nightmares or someone who wants to be contacted and interviewed. The family does not want to be interviewed. You want to be left alone. The Skidmore community has a troubling past and history. You don’t want that. You don’t deserve this. “

Montgomery was originally scheduled to be executed on December 8th. However, the execution was temporarily banned after her lawyers hired the coronavirus to visit her in prison.

The resumption of federal executions began on July 14 after a 17-year hiatus. And anti-death penalty groups said President Donald Trump pushed for executions ahead of the November election to improve his reputation as a leader who rules law and order.

US officials portrayed the executions as bringing long-awaited justice to victims and their families.

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