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Alabama man put to death for 1991 killing of woman

By KIM CHANDLER
Associated Press

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama man who avoided execution in February has been put to death for the 1991 killing of a woman abducted during a robbery and then shot in a cemetery. Fifty-two-year-old Willie B. Smith III received a lethal injection Thursday night at an Alabama prison. He was convicted of murdering 22-year-old Sharma Ruth Johnson. Prosecutors said Smith abducted Johnson from an ATM location, stole $80 from her and shot her at a cemetery where he took her. The U.S. Supreme Court blocked a February execution attempt, affirming Smith couldn’t be put to death without his pastor present. It refused to intervene Thursday after Smith’s lawyers argued he had an intellectual disability meriting further scrutiny.

The Associated Press

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