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  1. #1

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    Gary W. Ploof - Delaware Death Row



    Facts of the Crime:

    Ploof was sentenced to death on August 22, 2003 for the November 3, 2001 shooting death of his wife, Heidi Ploof.

  2. #2
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    Gary W. Ploof was a U.S. Air Force Staff Sergeant stationed with his wife, Heidi, at Dover Air Force Base during 2001. Beginning that year, Ploof had an affair with Adrienne Hendricks, a colleague with whom he worked part-time at a towing service. Ploof learned that effective November 1, 2001, the U.S. Air Force would provide $100,000 life insurance for military spouses. He was informed that he would be automatically enrolled unless he took affirmative action to disenroll.

    Ploof told his supervisor of his intent to refuse the policy coverage, but he took no action to do so. Ploof also told Hendricks that she should plan to move in with him starting November 5, 2001 because he and Heidi were having marital problems, and Heidi was preparing to move out.

    In truth, Heidi was not planning to move out nor did Ploof have any intention of rejecting the spousal U.S.A.F. life insurance coverage. Instead, Ploof intended to murder his wife soon after the life insurance policy became effective on November 1. On November 3, 2001, Ploof drove with Heidi to the parking lot of the Dover Wal-Mart where he shot her in the head with a .357 magnum revolver. He did that in a way that (he believed) would suggest that she committed suicide. He also developed a scheme to mislead the police in the event that a homicide investigation ensued. Security videotape of the Wal-Mart parking lot on the day that Heidi’s body was found showed Ploof hurriedly walking away from her vehicle. Ploof also constructed an elaborate alibi by making numerous frantic phone calls feigning his concern for his missing wife. One of the calls prompted a friend to search for Heidi on the dark country roads on which she would have driven home from work. Ploof even called Heidi’s cell phone in an attempt to deflect suspicion of his involvement. He then hid the murder weapon on his property and asked friends to hold on to another pistol and a gun case so that they would not be found by the police. Finally, he lied to police about his mistress, Hendricks, (suggesting that she was just a friend), about his weapons (maintaining that he owned no pistols), and about a life insurance policy in which Heidi was recently enrolled (insisting that he had no knowledge of the policy).

    http://courts.delaware.gov/OPINIONS/....ASPx?ID=49410

  3. #3
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    Submitted: May 25, 2004
    Decided: August 11, 2004

    For the foregoing reasons the judgment and sentence of the Superior Court are hereby AFFIRMED.

    Opinion here

    http://courts.delaware.gov/OPINIONS/....ASPx?ID=49410

  4. #4
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    Del. Judge Rejects Appeal of Death Row Inmate

    DOVER, Del. (AP/WBOC)- A Delaware Superior Court judge has upheld the conviction and death sentence of a former Dover Air Force Base sergeant who killed his wife to collect on her life insurance policy.

    Gary W. Ploof, 47, was convicted of first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of his wife, Heidi, as she sat in her car in the parking lot of a Dover Wal-Mart in November 2001.

    Ploof claimed that his wife committed suicide, but store security cameras captured him at the scene.

    Ploof argued a laundry list of issues on appeal, including that his lawyers were ineffective and that there were problems with the selection and conduct of jurors.

    But the judge ruled this week that none of Ploof's arguments was sufficient to overturn his conviction and sentence.

    Ploof, who was sentenced to death in 2003, lost a state Supreme Court appeal the following year.

    http://www.wboc.com/story/16671958/d...ath-row-inmate

  5. #5
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    On February 21, 2013, Ploof filed a habeas petition in Federal District Court.

    http://dockets.justia.com/docket/del...cv00294/51143/

  6. #6
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    Del. Supreme Court remands death sentence case

    The state Supreme Court has sent the case of a former Dover Air Force Base sergeant sentenced to death for killing his wife back to a lower court for further review.

    The justices this week rejected Gary Ploof's arguments regarding alleged failures by his trial attorney to present certain evidence during the guilt phase of his trial.

    But turning to the penalty phase, the court said the post-conviction hearing judge failed to reweigh aggravating evidence against the total mix of mitigating evidence in determining whether the defense's failure to present additional evidence during the penalty phase prejudiced Ploof.

    Ploof was convicted of shooting of his wife, Heidi, as she sat in her car in the parking lot of a Dover Wal-Mart in 2001. He claimed she committed suicide.

    Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/cri...#ixzz2VMjASKBe
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  7. #7
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    Delaware Supreme Court upholds death sentence of ex-Air Force staff sergeant

    A divided Delaware Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the death sentence of a former Air Force staff sergeant who killed his wife to collect on a $100,000 life insurance.

    Gary W. Ploof was convicted of shooting his 29-year-old wife, Heidi, to death in November 2001 in the parking lot of the Dover Wal-Mart. At trial, Ploof claimed his wife had committed suicide, and he tried to make it look like a homicide to spare her reputation.

    After Ploof was convicted and then-Superior Court Judge Henry duPont Ridgely imposed the death penalty, Ploof’s appellate attorneys turned up evidence of horrific childhood abuse from a number of foster children who had lived in the home of Ploof’s parents. They testified they were sexually abused by Ploof’s father and saw Gary Ploof physically abused, according to court papers.

    Ploof’s attorneys, Patrick Collins and Kathryn Garrison, argued that new evidence should have been considered by the jury that recommended the death penalty in 2003 and that Ploof’s trial attorney was ineffective for not presenting the evidence.

    The justices opined that the trial attorney “needed to do more,” but the majority did not see that as enough to overturn Ploof’s sentence.

    In the majority were Chief Justice Myron T. Steele and Justices Carolyn Berger and Jack B. Jacobs. Dissenting were Justice Randy J. Holland and Chancellor Leo Strine.

    No execution date has been set.

    http://www.delawareonline.com/articl...held-on-appeal
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  8. #8
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    Federal judge halts Ploof execution

    DOVER — A federal judge has stayed the execution of a Delaware man convicted of killing his wife while he appeals his conviction in federal court.

    A Delaware Superior Court judge last week scheduled the execution of 49-year-old Gary Ploof for Feb. 4.

    But public defenders asked that the execution be stayed pending resolution of a federal habeas corpus appeal filed earlier this year.

    The judge on Wednesday granted the request, which was not opposed by attorneys for the state.

    A divided Delaware Supreme Court in September upheld the death sentence for Ploof, a former Dover Air Force Base sergeant convicted of shooting his 29-year-old wife, Heidi, as she sat in her car in the parking lot of a Dover Wal-Mart in 2001.

    http://www.delawareonline.com/viewar...loof-execution

  9. #9
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    Murder in 2001, sentenced in 2003, still alive in 2013...
    No murder can be so cruel that there are not still useful imbeciles who do gloss over the murderer and apologize.

  10. #10
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    In 1994 they passed a bill that requires all executions to take place between 12:01 a.m. - 3:00 a.m. That would make for a very late night Xchat.

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