A 43-year-old man convicted of r*ping and beating a woman to death with a dumbbell has been executed by lethal injection in Alabama.
Christopher Eugene Brooks was convicted of the capital murder of 23-year-old Jo Deann Campbell, a woman he met when they worked at a camp in upstate New York.
According to the court record, Ms Campbell was seen speaking to Brooks at a restaurant where she worked on 30 December 1992, and later told a friend someone was spending the night in her living room. The next day, police found her partially clothed body under the bed in her apartment in the Birmingham suburb of Homewood.
Prosecutors said she had been bludgeoned with an 8lbs dumbbell and sexually assaulted. Brooks was pronounced dead at 6.38pm, after the US Supreme Court had denied a last-minute defence request for a stay of execution.
His final words were: “I hope this brings closure to everybody. I will take you with me in my heart… I love y’all. Bye. I love y’all.”
A prison chaplain held his hand and prayed with him as the first drug, a sedative, was administered. It was the first execution since Alabama announced in 2014 that it was changing two of the three drugs it uses for lethal injections – including switching to the sedative midazolam.
A jury convicted Brooks in 1993 of capital murder, robbery, burglary and rape.
His bloody fingerprint was found on a door handle in Ms Campbell’s bedroom and a palm print was found on her ankle, according to court records.
Brooks was later found with her car keys and had cashed her paycheck.
Lawyers for Brooks had argued another man who was at the apartment that night could have committed the killing.
Corrine Campbell said her sister was very trusting, but had no idea whom she had invited to stay when Brooks arrived uninvited.
“She was young, energetic, bubbly, hard-working. The young lady had no enemies.” she said.