Colorado's Death Row Gets Another Resident
The last execution in Colorado took place in 1997 when Gary Lee Davis, 53, was given a lethal injection for murdering Virginia "Ginny" May in 1986. Now, Robert Ray joins two other convicted killers on Colorado's death row after Arapahoe County District Judge Gerald Rafferty on Wednesday formalized the sentence a jury handed down nearly a year ago for killing Javad Marshall-Fields. Ray will be put to death via lethal injection, according to The Denver Post, for his role in plotting and ordering a hit on Marshall-Fields, who was shot and killed in June 2005 with his fiancee, Vivian Wolfe. Sir Mario Owens, the man who pulled the trigger, is already on death row for shooting the couple. Marshall-Fields was set to testify against Ray in the July 4, 2004, murder of Gregory Vann. Defense attorney Mike Root appeared shaken by the ruling, saying, "I think it's an injustice Mr. Ray received the death penalty." But Rhonda Fields, Javad's mother, said at the sentencing, "Javad and Vivian did not deserve to die," according to 9News. Her "soul," she said, "struggles with the aftermath of these murders." Ray is slated to be executed by injection in August, but it may be more than a decade until his sentence is carried out due to the lengthy appeals process, including an automatic Colorado Supreme Court review. Delivering death in Colorado is complicated, as 5280 recently discovered in an in-depth report, “The Politics of Killing.” Meanwhile, Willie Clark was sentenced last Friday to life in prison plus 1,152 years for the New Year's Day 2007 shooting death of Denver Broncos cornerback Darrent Williams (via The Associated Press).
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