The 29th Execution of 2013
Edward Harold Schad Jr., 71, the oldest person on Arizona's death row has been executed nearly 35 years after being charged with murder, reported The Associated Press.
Schad was given a lethal dose of pentobarbital at the state prison in
Florence, and was pronounced dead on October 9, 2013 at 10:12 a.m.
In his final hours, Schad thanked his lawyers and corrections officers who
watched over him during the 35 days since his execution was scheduled, said
Kelley Henry, a federal public defender who helped represent him.
Schad was on parole for the accidental 1968 strangulation death of a male sex
partner in Utah when he was accused of killing Lorimer "Leroy" Grove, 74. He was
arrested in Utah while driving Grove's Cadillac several weeks after Grove's body
was found on Aug. 9, 1978, south of Prescott. There was a rope knotted around
the victim's neck.
Authorities say Schad drove Grove's car across the country, used Grove's
credit cards and forged a check from his bank account.
Schad was convicted in Grove's death in 1979 and again in 1985 after the
first conviction was thrown out.
The conviction was upheld by the state Supreme Court in 1989 but since has
been tied up in a series of federal court appeals. The U.S. Supreme Court in
June lifted a stay put in place by an appeals court, ordering the court to issue
the execution authorization.
Schad has maintained he didn't kill Grove, but he told the state's clemency
board at a hearing last week that he has accepted his fate.
"I'm 71. I don't have many years left, but I would like to keep what I've got
and maybe get a few more, experience some of the green grass outside maybe,"
Schad said while asking the board to commute his sentence to life in prison. "If
we have to go down that road on Oct. 9 ... I'll get my last rites. I'll go
through that. I mean, I have no fear."
A top Yavapai County prosecutor told the clemency board that juries have
twice rejected Schad's assertion of innocence.
"He doesn't take any responsibility for what he did," Chief Deputy County
Attorney Dennis McGrane told the board. "Accidents two times, died of
strangulation? I don't think so."
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