NEW YORK: The United States executed Lisa Montgomery, a convicted murderer and the only woman on federal death row, early on Wednesday, making her the first female prisoner to be executed by the federal government since 1953.

Montgomery, 52, was convicted in 2007 in Missouri of kidnapping and strangling Bobbie Jo Stinnett, then eight months pregnant. Montgomery cut Stinnett’s fetus from the womb and tried to pass off the child as her own.

After Montgomery was strapped to a gurney in the government’s death chamber, a female executioner asked if she had any last words. Montgomery responded in a quiet, muffled voice, “No,” according to a reporter who served as a media witness.

Montgomery was put to death by lethal injection in the US Justice Department’s execution chamber at its prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Federal judges in multiple courts had delayed her execution to allow for hearings on whether she was too mentally ill to understand her punishment and whether the government had given insufficient notice of her execution date under law.

Published in Dawn, January 14th, 2021

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