"Innocent." Recently incarcerated capital punishment inmate on appeal
Johnny Winfield - Missouri DR
Phillip Halford - Alabama Death Row - Scheduled Execution
Start : Thursday 4 November 2010, 20:00
End : Thursday 4 November 2010, 20:00
Phillip Halford - Alabama Death Row - Scheduled Execution for November 4, 2010
Victims:Charles Eddie Shannon
The Crime: David Ferguson has waited more than two decades for justice in the slaying of his older brother.
As Ferguson grew up in the Daleville area he shared a bedroom with his brother, Charles Eddie Shannon. Ferguson recalled how they regularly hung out with who would later turn out to be the sons of his brother’s killer.
Evidence showed Phillip Hallford used his daughter to lure her boyfriend, Shannon, to a secluded bridge on April 13, 1986. Hallford shot Shannon once in the roof of the mouth, then dragged him to the side of the bridge and shot him two more times in the head before throwing him over the bridge and into the water, according to Attorney General Troy King’s Office. Hallford, 61, has been on death row since April 1987.
“My brother was trying to date his daughter,” Ferguson said. “He didn’t like my brother dating his daughter and so he shot him three times in the head. He killed a 16-year-old innocent person.”
Phillip Hallford, 63, who was convicted of killing his daughter's 16-year-old boyfriend was executed this evening.
He was pronounced dead at 6:26 p.m. at Holman Prison. When asked if he had any final words, he said, "No."
Hallford spoke softly to the chaplain and guards for a few minutes as the lethal injection was administered, and then quietly slipped away.
Hallford lost a bid for a stay of execution by the Alabama Supreme Court just hours before he was to die by lethal injection at Holman Prison for the shooting death of Eddie Shannon at a rural south Alabama bridge.
Gov. Bob Riley also refused to grant clemency. Hallford's attorney filed a final motion for a stay with the U.S. Supreme Court.
Melinda Hallford Powell, who was 15 and pregnant at the time of the killing, said her father forced her to lure Shannon to the rural site in Dale County, where he shot him to death and threw the body off a nearby bridge. Then, she said, her father made a necklace with the casings from the bullets and forced her to wear it.
Powell, who now lives in North Carolina and is married with three children, said she had been sexually abused by her father and had lived "a nightmare" for years.
"You can't imagine what it was like. I was kind of a zombie after that," Powell told The Associated Press in a phone interview Wednesday night.
The Associated Press generally does not identify victims of sexual abuse, but Powell said her account of the abuse is in court records and she had no objections.
According to trial testimony, Hallford was angry that his daughter was dating Shannon and, before dumping the body from the bridge, Hallford took the boy's wallet.
Hallford spent his final hours Thursday visiting with his mother, Mertie Boyett, and other relatives. He did not request a final meal, but instead had cheese crackers, nacho cheese Bugles, a ham-and-cheese sandwich and a Dr Pepper from vending machines.
Hallford gave his only posessions, including a watch and a Bible, to his mother.
Shannon's stepmother, Angelita Johns, said in a statement that Hallford's execution "is long overdue."
"What Phillip Hallford did to my stepson Eddie Shannon was unforgivable," Johns said. "Eddie Shannon was an innocent 16-year-old just beginning to live his life."
Alabama prison system officials said they had an adequate stock of sodium thiopental, a drug used in lethal injections that has been in short supply nationally. The shortage prompted some states to delay executions or go overseas to find the drug, which makes an inmate unconscious before other drugs cause paralysis and stop the heart.
Last Meal: He did not request a final meal, but instead had cheese crackers, nacho cheese Bugles, a ham-and-cheese sandwich and a Dr Pepper from vending machines.
Final Statement: When asked if he had any final words, he said, "No."
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