Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ohio Man Faces Execution for 1993 Murder

The Associated Press is reporting that an Ohio man who bludgeoned his girlfriend to death, threw her body in a river and stole her ATM card to feed his crack addiction faces execution tomorrow.

The Ohio Parole Board has recommended no mercy for 49-year-old Michael Benge of Hamilton, Ohio, in the 1993 murder of Judith Gabbard. Gov. Ted Strickland hasn't announced his decision on whether to grant Benge clemency. Benge has no more legal appeals.

Prosecutors say Benge murdered Gabbard over wanting the bank card. He beat her with a tire iron, weighed her body down with concrete, and slid it in the Miami River. His family members have said the violence was fueled by drugs.

Benge's execution would be the state's 8th lethal injection this year, the 41st since capital punishment was reinstated in 1999. Benge would also be the 41st execution nationwide in 2010.

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