Death row Pennsylvania: Condemned men with 2 death sentences
While Gov. Tom Wolf's moratorium on executions continues in Pennsylvania, 21
men -- each with 2 death sentences -- sit on death row.
Here are those men and what they did to deserve the death penalty.
Ralph Birdsong Ralph Birdsong, born Jan. 29, 1961, went to an alleged drug
house in the 5700 block of North 17th Street, Philadelphia, on July 17, 1988,
rang the doorbell and was let in by a resident who had known him for years.
Once inside, Birdsong shot 5 people, killing 2. He then forced a girl out of
the home and across the street where he raped and sodomized her. Along with the
death penalty, Birdsong was sentenced to 52 1/2 to 105 years in prison.
Laquaille Bryant Laquaille Bryant, born Nov. 16, 1981, fatally shot Chante
Wright and Octavia Green on Jan. 19, 2008. Wright had been a scheduled
prosecution witness in the homicide trial of Haleem Bey and had returned to
Philadelphia from a federal witness relocation program hours before her death.
The FBI determined there were phone calls between Bey and Bryant in the hours
before the murders. Police found Wright's body on the sidewalk and Green's body
in the front passenger seat of a nearby parked car. Both women had been shot
multiple times in the back, and Bryant's fingerprint was found on the vehicle.
Death row's worst: These men each face 3 or more death sentences in
Terry Ray Chamberlain
Terry Ray Chamberlain, born April 19, 1952, killed his estranged wife, Sherri
Chamberlain, and her boyfriend, Gregory Inman, in their Bradford County
residence in the early morning hours of Aug. 22, 1991. Sherri Chamberlain
survived long enough to call a neighbor for help and identify her killer.
Russell Cox, born Sept. 25, 1967, was convicted of 2 counts of 1st-degree
murder for the stabbing deaths of a mother and daughter in North Philadelphia
on Feb. 26, 1986. Co-defendant, Percy Lee, 17 at the time of the murders,
initially was sentenced to death. He was resentenced to 2 consecutive life
terms. Lee had lived with the woman and her children prior to being evicted.
The mother had been hog-tied and stabbed 48 times in the face, neck and chest.
The daughter also had been bound, raped and stabbed 53 times. Cox also was
convicted of rape.
Anthony James Dick
Anthony James Dick, born Feb. 2, 1964, pleaded guilty to 2 counts of 1st-degree
murder for the Jan. 24, 2006 unprovoked shootings of his 19-month-old son and
4-year-old stepson in a Columbia County motel. Dick also shot his wife, who
survived, and himself. Dick asked to be sentenced to death. A judge granted
Anthony James Fiebiger
Anthony James Fiebiger, born July 14, 1963, described in news coverage as a
sociopath, received 2 death sentences for murders committed in 1982 and 1989.
Fiebiger and Joseph Morton had lured a 16-year-old girl into a Mount Washington
park where they beat, kicked, strangled, raped and stabbed her, sodomized her
with a foreign object and buried her in a shallow grave. The body was found on
May 22, 1982. Fiebiger pleaded guilty and was sentenced to death. Morton was
sentenced to life in prison. Fiebiger also strangled his 53-year-old girlfriend
on Feb. 28, 1989 and buried her body in a 55-gallon drum in Mingo Creek County
Park in Washington County and poured car battery acid over the grave. Fiebiger
pleaded guilty and was sentenced to death.
Ronald Gibson, born June 24, 1967, was with 2 other men when a patron and an
off-duty police officer were killed in a Philadelphia bar on Dec. 24, 1990. A
jury convicted Gibson of 2 counts of 1st-degree murder and sentenced him to
Junius Burno, born Oct. 13,1967, shot and killed 2 men in Allentown on April
13, 2003 during a botched robbery.
Kenneth Hairston, born June 17, 1951, fatally bludgeoned his wife and autistic
teenage son with a sledgehammer on June 11, 2001, 2 weeks before he was to
stand trial for allegedly sexually assaulting another family member.
Firefighters found Hairston's wife and son when they responded to smoke coming
from the Pittsburgh home. Hairston was found with several self-inflicted stab
wounds. A jury convicted him of both murders and sentenced him to death.
Robert Hughes, born Dec. 30, 1968, shot 2 McDonald's employees once -- each in
the head -- while robbing the Chester County restaurant before opening hours on
Jan. 8, 1989. 2 other employees on their way into the restaurant were able to
avoid Hughes. One saw Hughes waving a gun at the manager, and the other saw an
employee laying on the floor next to the safe signaling for him to leave. Both
employees called police from a nearby store. Roger Judge
Roger Judge, born Dec. 8, 1961, killed his former girlfriend, Tabatha Mitchell,
15, and Christopher Outterbridge, 18, on Wyoming Avenue near 11th Street on
Sept. 14, 1984 in Philadelphia. On June 14, 1987, Judge escaped from Holmesburg
Prison. A year and a day later, Canadian authorities arrested Judge in
Vancouver for robbery. He served 10 years in prison in Canada before being
extradited to the United States.
Jerome Marshall Jerome Marshall, born Jan. 1, 1963, strangled Sharon Saunders,
her 2-year-old daughter Karima Saunders and Myndi McKoy sometime between Jan.
19 to Jan. 25, 1983, when their bodies were discovered in a Philadelphia
apartment. Marshall confessed that he became enraged when Saunders told him she
was going to marry another man. According to Pennsylvania Supreme Court
documents, he had sex with Sharon Saunders, and then while she slept, he put a
clothes line around her neck and strangled her to death. He then went into
McKoy's room to tie her up. When she awoke and began to scream, he found a
knife and stabbed her in order to quiet her and tied her up. He then held her
head under water in the bath tub until she no longer moved. He killed Karima,
who had awoken and called for her mother, in the same way.
Landon D. May
Landon D. May, born July 4, 1982, along with Michael Bourgeois, tortured and
killed Terry Smith, 49, and Lucy Smith, 51, in their Ephrata home on Sept. 5,
2001. The Smiths were Bourgeois' adoptive parents. The torture, according to
court documents, was inflicted to obtain the Smiths' PINs for their ATM cards.
May also sexually assaulted Lucy Smith. Bourgeois, 16 at the time of the
murders, initially was sentenced to life without parole. He was resentenced in
2017 to 50 years to life.
Noel Montalvo, born May 16, 1963, along with his brother, Milton Montalvo,
broke into the East Philadelphia Street, York, apartment of Milton Montalvo's
former girlfriend, Miriam Ascencio, 44, and killed her and her friend, Manuel
Santana, 37, on April 19, 1988. In separate trials, both Montalvos were
convicted and sentenced to death. Milton Montalvo's death sentences were
overturned in 2017 and he awaits a resentencing hearing.
Craig Murphy Craig Murphy, born June 19, 1955, killed Raymond Gambrell on Jan.
22, 1981, in Philadelphia. He then killed Steven Brown, Gambrell's friend and a
reluctant prosecution witness, on May 13, 1981. According Supreme Court
documents, Murphy had accused Gambrell of previously breaking into his mother's
house. At gunpoint, he forced Brown into a car with 2 of Murphy's cohorts and
escorted Gambrell into an empty lot where he shot and killed him. Murphy then
returned to the car and threatened Brown against talking to the police. Police
later did question Brown, who implicated Murphy. Murphy was jailed on a
homicide charge but was released when Brown failed to show for 3 scheduled
preliminary hearings. Brown was killed 2 weeks after returning to Philadelphia.
Michael John Parrish
Michael John Parrish, born Nov. 19, 1985, was a Monroe County prison guard when
he killed his girlfriend, 21-year-old Victoria Adams, and their 20-month-old
son Sidney, a heart transplant recipient on July 6, 2009. Parrish, who sported
several Nazi tattoos, told authorities he became enraged when Adams arrived
home 6 hours late in the company of 3 men. Parrish shot Adams and the child
Samuel B. Randolph
Samuel B. Randolph, born Nov. 25, 1971, killed Thomas Easter and Anthony Burton
on Sept. 19, 2011, outside a Harrisburg bar following an altercation 18 days
earlier at another Harrisburg bar. Randolph executed 3 drive-by shootings in
the intervening days, wounding several people before committing the murders.
Albert E. Reid
Albert E. Reid, born Nov. 14, 1948, shot and killed his estranged wife, Carla
Reid, and her 14-year-old daughter, Deidra Moore, in their beds in Hamilton
Township, Franklin County on Dec. 27, 1996. Reid had been accused of sexually
assaulting the teen.
Anthony Reid, born Nov. 1, 1967, a hit man for the Junior Black Mafia, was
convicted and sentenced to death separately for the fatal shootings of Mark
Lisby, 25, on July 11, 1988, and Neil Wilkinson, 18, on March 13, 1989, in
Philadelphia. Lisby was killed over a $150 drug debt. Wilkinson was a fellow
member of the Junior Black Mafia. 6 days before Wilkinson's murder, Reid shot
and killed 16-year-old Michael Waters, who had been among a group of youngsters
who threw snowballs at Reid's car.
Robert Wharton, born Feb. 12, 1963, killed Bradley and Fern Hart on Jan. 30,
1984. Wharton and another man had forced their way into the Harts' Philadelphia
residence at knifepoint. Wharton forced Bradley Hart to write him a personal
check over a disputed work matter. Both victims were then strangled.
Raghunandan Yandamuri, born Feb. 21, 1986, killed Satyavathi Venna, 61, and her
10-month-old granddaughter on Oct. 22, 2012, in Upper Merion Township,
Montgomery County, in a botched kidnapping-for-ransom. Saddled with heavy
gambling debts, Yandamuri broke into his neighbors' apartment where he killed
Venna, who tried to defend her grandchild. When the baby would not stop crying,
Yandamuri suffocated the girl by stuffing a handkerchief in her mouth. The
baby's body was found in a suitcase in the basement of the apartment complex.
[sources: Pennsylvania Department of Corrections; Pennsylvania Administrative
Office of Pennsylvania]
(source: York Daily Record)
Jury Selection Expected To Begin In Shawn Grate Murder Trial
Jury selection is expected to get underway Monday in Ashland County Common
Pleas Court in the trial of accused serial killer Shawn Grate.
A pool of 358 prospective jurors is available with the selection process
expected to take up to 2 weeks.
That's due, in part, to the size of the pool and the fact there will be 2
rounds of questioning, the 1st, just like any other case, and the 2nd, more
specifically about the death penalty.
Grate is accused of the kidnapping and aggravated murders of 43-year-old Stacey
Stanley and 29-year-old Elizabeth Griffith, whose bodies were found by police
in a vacant home at 363 Covert Court in Ashland.
In September 2016, Grate was arrested in Ashland after a woman he allegedly
abducted called 9-1-1 as he was asleep.
He pleaded not guilty to the abduction and sexual assault of the woman who
called 9-1-1 and the deaths of Stanley and Griffith.
Autopsies determined they had been strangled.
He has also been linked to the deaths of 2 women in Richland County and one in
Marion County but has not been charged in those cases.
He is accused of 23 felony charges in Ashland County.
The court's docket shows the trial is tentatively scheduled to run through May
Ashland County Prosecutor Christopher Tunnell is the lead prosecutor in the
Robert Whitney and Rolf Whitney are Grate's attorneys.
Ashland County Common Pleas Court Judge Ron Forsthoefel will preside over the
(source: WMFD news)
Death penalty critics use man's sentence to push law change in Missouri
Death penalty opponents have cited a Missouri man's recent sentence in efforts
to change state law regarding capital punishment.
Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty is pushing state lawmakers to
prevent judges from sending criminals to death row without a jury's approval.
The group cited the case of Craig Wood, who is on death row, the Springfield
Wood was convicted of 1st-degree murder in November for the 2014 abduction,
rape and killing of a 10-year-old girl. The jury couldn't agree on Wood's
punishment after the guilty verdict, but a judge still gave him a death
sentence in January. The other option was life in prison without parole.
Wood's case was 1 of 2 Missourians for Alternatives used to advocate for a bill
that would take away the capital punishment option if juries can't agree. A
legislative committee unanimously approved such a bill in March.
The other case the group cited was related to Marvin Rice, a former sheriff's
deputy and prison worker accused of killing his ex-girlfriend and her new
boyfriend. A lone juror advocated for capital punishment in Rice's case,
putting the decision in the hands of a judge who agreed on the death penalty.
"In both of these cases, 2 individual judges imposed death and undermined the
role of the juries," the advocate group said last week. "Both Wood and Rice's
death sentences raise questions about judicial override in Missouri and its
constitutionality under the Sixth Amendment."
Missouri is 1 of only 2 states where judges can give death sentences if a jury
deadlocks, according to the group. Other states in such a situation choose a
sentence of life in prison.
(sourcec: Associated Press)
Man charged with murder in Oklahoma Indian Country
An Oklahoma man is charged with murder on Indian Country land in western
An indictment in federal court in Oklahoma City charges 54-year-old Tommy
Bullcoming of Hammon with 1st-degree premeditated murder, 1st-degree felony
murder, carjacking resulting in death, kidnapping resulting in death, and
A federal public defender appointed to represent Bullcoming declined comment
Saturday, but said Bullcoming is in custody.
The indictment alleges Bullcoming kidnapped a woman who is referred to only by
the initials L.Z. last September, stole her car, killed her by stabbing and
cutting her, then set fire to her home in Hammon.
Bullcoming could face the death penalty if convicted of charge of carjacking
resulting in death. The murder and kidnapping charges carry life in prison
sentences while the arson charge carries up to 25 years in prison.
(source: Associated Press)
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