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Georgia executes Willie Pye for 1993 murder

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Georgia executes Willie Pye (Photo: AP)
  • Georgia executes Willie Pye.
  • Some claim it’s an injustice.
  • What did he do?

Last Wednesday, Georgia executed Willie Pye by lethal injection.

He was convicted of murdering a woman thirty years ago.

The execution, carried out according to the law, concludes a long legal process that has lasted for years.

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Georgia executes Willie Pye

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Photo: The Associated Press

Willie James Pye, 59, was sentenced to death for kidnapping, raping and murdering Alicia Lynn Yarbrough in 1993.

According to EFE, this execution marks a milestone in Georgia, being the first in over four years.

Despite efforts from Pye’s lawyers and death penalty activists, the execution went forward.

This case highlights divisions surrounding criminal justice and fuels the debate on the humanity and effectiveness of the death penalty in the U.S. judicial system.

Pye’s appeals were denied

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Photo: The Associated Press

On Wednesday afternoon, Willie Pye’s defense team appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, citing procedural issues.

However, the appeal was denied, causing a four-hour delay in the execution. Ultimately, Pye was executed at 11:03 PM local time at a prison in Jackson.

Before his execution, Pye requested chicken sandwiches and hamburgers, according to a statement from the Georgia Department of Corrections.

This incident underscores the rigidity of the legal system in capital punishment cases and its implications in the execution process.

Did his lawyer fail him?

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Photo: Shutterstock – Archivo MundoNOW

The defense’s plea for clemency, arguing the ineffectiveness and racism of the initial court-appointed lawyer, was denied by the court.

The defense claimed that Pye’s lawyer failed to disclose his intellectual disability during the trial.

Their document states:» «If his court-appointed lawyer had not neglected his duty, the jurors would have known that Mr. Pye is intellectually disabled with an IQ of 68.»

This incident highlights the shortcomings of the legal system in safeguarding the rights of the accused and the importance of adequate defense.

Activists say there were injustices in this case

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Photo: Shutterstock – Archivo MundoNOW

They also argued that Pye suffered «deep poverty, neglect, constant violence and chaos in his family home» since birth, and that he regretted the crime.

The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles rejected the commutation of the death sentence to life imprisonment yesterday, after thoroughly reviewing the case.

According to court documents, Pye, along with two accomplices, broke the home of his on-again off-again girlfriend’s home with the intention of robbing her.

Pye and his accomplices stole jewelry, kidnapped and raped Yarbrough in a motel — then they took her to a roadside where Pye shot her three times.

One of the accomplices testified against Willie Pye

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Photo: The Associated Press

One of the accomplices, who was a teenager at the time, confessed to the authorities and testified against Pye and the other accomplice, who received a life sentence.

The Georgia Supreme Court, in 1989, ruled that executing individuals with intellectual disabilities violates the constitution, requiring substantial evidence.

State and federal courts upheld Pye’s death sentence, along with three life sentences and an additional 20 years.

According to CNN, three of the jurors in Pye’s trial recently stated that they opposed his execution.

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