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Convicted child murderer dies in prison

Discussion in 'Archive: Your Jedi Council Community' started by timmoishere, Sep 30, 2009.

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  1. timmoishere

    timmoishere Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 2, 2007
    (CNN) -- A Florida death-row inmate convicted of abducting and murdering 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford in 2005 has died, prison officials said Wednesday.
    John Couey had been sentenced to death for killing 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford in Florida in 2005.

    John Evander Couey, 51, died at 11:15 a.m. ET of natural causes, a Florida Department of Corrections spokeswoman told CNN. He had been taken to a Jacksonville, Florida, hospital from Florida State Prison in Starke, Florida.

    Because of privacy laws, no further information could be released by the Department of Corrections.

    A source close to the case told CNN that Couey's death was not unexpected and he had been ill for some time.

    "I never dreamed it would happen like this," Jessica's father, Mark Lunsford, told CNN. He said he never thought he would live long enough to see Couey put to death because of the lengthy appeals process.

    He said he was sad when he heard the news of Couey's death. "To me, death is sad," he said. "But her death, Jessie's death, has been redeemed ... I'm relieved. I'm glad it's over with."

    Couey was sentenced to die in August 2007 for abducting and raping Lunsford, then killing her by burying her alive. The girl was snatched from her bed in her family's Homosassa, Florida, home the evening of February 23, 2005, by Couey, a registered sex offender. Her body was found three weeks later, buried at the home of Couey's half-sister, who lived within sight of the Lunsford home.

    The girl's body was wrapped in plastic garbage bags, and her hands were bound with speaker wire. She was clutching a stuffed dolphin -- a toy won for her at a state fair by her father, and which Couey allowed her to bring with her when she was abducted.

    "I am not shedding any tears," the girl's grandmother, Ruth Lunsford, said on Wednesday. "I don't feel sorry for him. I think God said, 'John Couey, it's time to go.' "

    "I don't feel sorry for him that he had to suffer," she said. "He didn't have any mercy on my granddaughter when he murdered her. I'm glad we didn't have to wait years and years for his appeals and execution, and the taxpayers no longer have to pay for him. I'm glad that God took a hand in it."

    Citrus County Sheriff Jeff Dawsy, who led the investigation into the girl's death, told reporters he wished Couey could have faced the death sentence handed down by the jury.

    "I know he didn't suffer the way Jessie did when he killed her," Dawsy said. "I'm sorry I won't get to look him in the eyes as he died, but I'm relieved to know he'll never hurt another child again."

    Authorities believe Lunsford was kept for several days before she was killed. Her blood was found on a mattress in the home where Couey was living, her fingerprints also were discovered at the location. During the search for the girl, as authorities and hundreds of volunteers combed Citrus County, north of Tampa, police twice visited that home.

    "Couey's timeline after he kidnapped Jessica Lunsford leaves open the possibility that she was alive, and in the house, at the time of the first and possibly the second interview," according to a prosecution memo in the case.

    In sentencing Couey, Judge Ric Howard noted Couey became fearful of police dogs being used in the area in the search for the girl. He told Lunsford he was planning to take her home, but did not want her to be seen, and so persuaded her to get into a trash bag. He then knotted another trash bag over her head, placed her in a hole and shoveled dirt on top of her.

    Jurors convicted Couey of first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual battery on a child under 12 in March 2007.

    Howard, at Couey's sentencing, brought many in the courtroom to tears as he discussed how the girl died slowly as her oxygen ran out. A medical examiner testified she could have been alive as much as five minutes, or even longer, before she lost consciousness, Howard said.

    "He caused a slow, suffering, conscious death," Howard said of Couey. "Her only source of comfort during this horrific experience was her purple dolphin." Another horrific detail the judge noted
  2. DantheJedi

    DantheJedi Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Aug 23, 2009
  3. DarthPoojaNaberrie

    DarthPoojaNaberrie Jedi Master star 5

    Jun 21, 2005
    I hope the natural cause was being unable to breathe when a bunch of dirt unexpectedly fell on his head.
  4. Aytee-Aytee

    Aytee-Aytee Jedi Master star 5

    Jul 20, 2008
    I had heard somewhere that people convicted of harming children have the shortest prison life spans. Prison justice and codes of honor among inmates and such.

    Happened once at Angola. A convicted child molester sharing a cell with four other inmates went to sleep one night and was found in the morning with his throat slashed.

    None of the other inmates knew a thing about it. Must have been a suicide.... [face_whistling]
  5. Lord Vivec

    Lord Vivec Chosen One star 9

    Apr 17, 2006
  6. twilightjedi0622

    twilightjedi0622 Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 7, 2004
    Justice was served without running up the electric bill. NICE!
  7. DarthLassic007

    DarthLassic007 Jedi Master star 6

    Nov 25, 2002
    I wish he was killed by execution instead of natural causes. At least he's burning in hell as we speak.
  8. DarthPoojaNaberrie

    DarthPoojaNaberrie Jedi Master star 5

    Jun 21, 2005
  9. Ambassador Cara Jade

    Ambassador Cara Jade Jedi Knight star 6

    Oct 23, 1999
    I guess it's a good thing that the family can find peace now...
  10. timmoishere

    timmoishere Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 2, 2007
  11. Asterix_of_Gaul

    Asterix_of_Gaul Jedi Master star 5

    Sep 13, 2007
    So much pain :(
  12. twilightjedi0622

    twilightjedi0622 Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 7, 2004

    Aside from everything else he buried Jessica ALIVE! She was 9 years old and he buried her ALIVE!

    I have three 9 year olds can you even imagine how absolutly and utterly terrified she was? What she had to be thinking?

    A higher power passed judgement on his a**. I say good ridance to bad trash.

    Sorry no pain in this only gratitude.
  13. VaderLVR64

    VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus star 8 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 5, 2004
    It would have been VERY difficult to be a healthcare worker assigned to care for him. Imagine the temptation of being just a little (or a lot) too rough with medical procedures??? [face_whistling]
  14. DarthPhelps

    DarthPhelps Jedi Master star 5

    Jan 31, 2002
    Dying of natural causes was too good for him.
  15. DarthNotsonice

    DarthNotsonice Jedi Master star 5

    Apr 6, 2005
    Every time I saw that piece of filth, it just made me want to *****slap him into oblivion. [face_frustrated]
  16. Darth_wanderguard

    Darth_wanderguard Game Host star 6 VIP - Game Host

    Apr 26, 2005
    It was a horrible series of horrible events, and now it's over. I mourn for all of those he hurt, but I refuse to revel in his death. I will rejoice only that he can do no more harm.

    Yes, I spoke that way on purpose. What of it? :p

    EDIT: But in all seriousness, this story really makes me sick. I don't even understand how someone can do something like that to a child. I think the fact that these kind of things even happen at all really says something about our society. If we could only have a gentler, more caring hand with one another, people wouldn't be twisted enough to behave this way :(
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