Timothy McVeigh, who killed 168 people in the Oklahoma City bombing
A jury has sentenced Ricardo Sanchez Jr. and Daniel Troya to death for killing the Escobedo family of four along Florida’s Turnpike in St. Lucie County.
The federal death penalty is different from the state of Florida’s death sentence in many ways.
Only 51 inmates are on federal Death Row in Terre Haute, Ind. Florida houses 392. Crimes punishable by the federal death penalty include genocide, killing witnesses, in a trial, terrorism and murder committed as part of a drug enterprise.
Florida has executed 67 men and women since the death penalty was reinstated by the Supreme Court in 1976. The feds have executed three men since Congress reinstated it in 1988. Some of the more famous of those executed were Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber, and Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, convicted of sabotage for selling atomic secrets to the Soviet Union.
Here’s some of those executed since 1927:
James Horace Alderman
1927: James Horace Alderman, known as “King of the Rumrunners,” was intercepted by a Coast Guard vessel 30 miles off Florida’s coast. His boat was laden with alcohol during the era of Prohibition. As Alderman boarded the vessel, he pulled out his pistol. When two Coast Guardsmen and a Secret Service agent rushed him, he shot them all dead. Later, his execution was scheduled for the Broward County Jail, but the county wanted it to occur on federal property. So a makeshift gallows was erected at the Coast Guard hangar.
“When this is read I will have passed over the brink of eternity into the Great Beyond. “I would like to state through the medium of The Miami Herald that I am feeling fine, physically, mentally and spiritually. With the wonderful comfort and strength that I received from Jesus Christ, I am assured that when tomorrow comes I will go with smiles of comfort on my face. … “As I sit here in my cell I can look back and see just what caused me to be where I am today. Drunkenness first starts a young man to gambling — and swearing grows on him — and from that step he becomes hardened in his heart in envy and hatred toward mankind. Then, as he grows up, he becomes what you would call educated to crime. Bootlegging and smuggling is the next step. And there are other angles of downfall that lead to the devil. “The money I made neither did me nor my dear family any good. We thought it did, but no. You can see what it has done — a death sentence by hanging — and a broken-hearted family.”
Read the 1929 Time magazine account of his hanging, here. (more…)