Serial killer Joseph Paul Franklin, the white supremacist leader who targeted blacks and Jews, has been executed at 6:17 a.m. Wednesday morning in Missouri.
Franklin was sentenced to death in the murder of Gerald Gordon in 1977 outside a synagogue. He has claimed responsibility for nearly 20 other murders across the country between 1977 and 1980 to start a race war. He also admitted he was the shooter who paralyzed Hustler magazine founder Larry Flynt in 1978.
Franklin’s execution comes after a delay Tuesday night, when U.S. District judge Nanette Laughery agreed with Franklin’s attorneys that the lethal injection phenobarbital carried “a high risk of contamination and prolonged, unnecessary pain beyond that which is required to achieve death.” Then Franklin was granted another stay by U.S. District Judge Carol Jackson, based on the defendant’s separate petition on Franklin’s competency. But early Wednesday, the Supreme Court upheld the federal appeals court’s decision overturning stays.
Joseph Paul Franklin was acquitted in the shooting death of civil rights activist Vernon Jordan in Fort Wayne, Ind. He admitted later that he was involved in the attack.
Joseph Paul Franklin was the first inmate executed in Missouri in three years and the 35th person executed in the United States this year.
By: Renayle Fink