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Steven Timothy Judy - Indiana Execution - March 9, 1981
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Thread: Steven Timothy Judy - Indiana Execution - March 9, 1981

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    Steven Timothy Judy - Indiana Execution - March 9, 1981


    Terry Chasteen, Misty Zollers, 5,
    Stephen, 4, and Mark, 2



    Steven Judy was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on May 24, 1956.


    Facts of Crime: Convicted and sentenced to death in the April 28, 1979 murders of Terry Chasteen, five-year-old Misty Zollers, four-year-old Stephen Chasteen and two-year-old Mark Chasteen.

    Hunters discovered Terry Chasteen's body in White Lick Creek, near State Road 67 and Mooresville in Morgan County. A police search of the creek led to the discovery of the bodies of three small children, aged 2, 4 and 5. Terry Chasteen was found naked, with her hands and feet bound with strips of material torn from her clothing, and her head covered with her slacks. She had been gagged and strangled with other strips of cloth.

    The evidence established that Terry Chasteen had been raped and that she died of strangulation, while the children died of asphyxia due to drowning. At trial, Judy presented an insanity defense and testified at length concerning his commission of the rape and murders. Judy stated that he was driving on Interstate 465 in Marion County when he passed Terry Chasteen's car. He testified that he motioned for her to pull over to the shoulder of the road, indicating that something was wrong with the rear of her car. The two vehicles pulled to the shoulder and stopped, and Judy purported to assist the victims.

    In the process, he removed the coil wire, thereby rendering Terry Chasteen's car inoperable. When her car would not start, Judy offered her and the children a ride, and she accepted. Judy then drove the victims to the location of the killings and pulled his truck off the road. He testified that he directed them on foot toward the creek, and that he sent the children down the path ahead of Terry and him. Judy testified that he then raped Terry Chasteen and bound her hands and feet and gagged her. When Terry cried out, the children ran back up the path to them. Judy stated that the children stood around him and yelled.

    At that point, he strangled Terry Chasteen and threw her body into the creek. Judy testified that he then threw each of the children as far as he could into the water. He stated that he remembered seeing one of the children standing in the creek. Judy returned to his truck after attempting to eradicate his footprints. He then drove away from the scene. Judy's version of the events very substantially corroborated the evidence presented by the State. At the death phase of the trial, Judy ordered his attorneys not to present any evidence of mitigating circumstances. Judy stated to the jury in open court at the sentencing hearing that he would advise them to give him the death sentence, because he had no doubt that he would kill again if he had an opportunity, and some of the people he might kill in the future might be members of the jury. He also directed a similar comment to the trial judge.

    Time of Death: 12:12 AM

    Manner of Execution: Electrocution

    Last Meal: Prime rib, lobster, baked potatoes, salad and dinner rolls. His request for beer with his last meal was denied.

    Final Words: "I don't hold no grudges. This is my doing. I'm sorry it happened."

  2. #2
    Senior Member Frequent Poster joe_con's Avatar
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    March 9, 1981

    INDIANA MURDERER EXECUTED AT PRISON

    By NATHANIEL SHEPPARD, Jr.
    The New York Times

    MICHIGAN CITY, Ind. — At 12:12 this morning, 24-year-old Steven Timothy Judy was strapped into the electric chair at the Indiana State Prison and put to death for the murders of a 21-year-old Indianapolis woman and her three children in 1979.

    Mr. Judy's execution was the first in Indiana since 1961 and the fourth in the United States since the Supreme Court lifted its ban on capital punishment in 1976.

    Mr. Judy had steadfastly refused to appeal his sentence and said that he would rather die than spend the rest of his life in prison, a position he maintained until the time of his death.

    Shortly before he was escorted from a holding cell to the electric chair, Mr. Judy gave his watch to Jim Lowery, another prisoner, and told prison officials: ''I don't hold no grudges. This is my doing. I'm sorry it happened.''

    Late last night, automobiles filed slowly past the prison, situated 60 miles southeast of Chicago, their occupants occasionally shouting, ''Burn Judy.'' In a nearby parking lot about 40 people continued a candlelight vigil against capital punishment. The protest was sponsored by a coalition of religious groups.

    ''I beg of you not to give up your fight,'' Mr. Judy's foster mother, Mary Carr, told the group yesterday. ''Even if we lose here, maybe people will eventually learn that this is wrong.''

    Across town, a group called Protect the Innocent sponsored a rally in support of the death penalty. Mark Chasteen, whose former wife, Terry Lee, and three children were slain by Mr. Judy, said he would volunteer to ''throw the switch.''

    ''I believe it is time that the criminals feel the wrath of the system instead of the victims,'' Mr. Chasteen said. At 2:30 P.M. yesterday, Mr. Judy was showered and shaved in preparation for the execution. Later, he was moved from his cell on death row to the holding cell near the electric chair, where he spent his last hours. His last meal consisted of prime rib, lobster tails and baked potatoes, prison officials said.

    The only witnesses to the execution were prison and state officials, Mr. Judy's foster father, Robert Carr of Indianapolis, and his attorney, Steven L. Harris.

    Mr. Judy displayed a macabre sense of humor by welcoming and joking about his execution since he was sentenced to die. At his trial he confessed that he got Mrs. Chasteen to stop her automobile by signaling that her car had a flat tire. Once she had done so he disabled her vehicle by removing an ignition wire. He then offered Mrs. Chasteen and her children a lift in his car but took them to a secluded spot where he committed the murders.

    Like Gary Mark Gilmore, whose death by a Utah firing squad Jan. 17, 1977, was the first execution in the United States in a decade, Mr. Judy said he wanted to die and resisted efforts by various groups to avert his execution.

    There have been three executions in the United States since the 1976 Supreme Court decision - Mr. Gilmore in Utah, 30-year-old John Spenkelink, who was electrocuted in Florida May 25, 1979, and Jesse W. Bishop, 46, who died in the Nevada gas chamber Oct. 22, 1979. Each of the men had been convicted of murder. Refused to Appeal Sentence

    Mr. Judy, a former Indianapolis construction worker, refused to appeal his sentence, saying that he could not be sure he would not kill again if he were ever released and that he did not want to spend the rest of his life in prison.

    The American Civil Liberties Union and a group of ministers asked the Governor to commute Mr. Judy's sentence to life imprisonment. Amnesty International initiated a letter-writing campaign that flooded the office of Gov. Robert D. Orr with close to 700 letters asking that clemency be granted.

    But Governor Orr, a supporter of capital punishment, said he could ''find no reason under the sun'' to change his position. On Friday, the United States Supreme Court, by a 7-to-2 vote, turned down an emergency request by Larry Williams, another convicted murder on Indiana's Death Row, for a stay of Mr. Judy's sentence. Mr. Williams asked that a stay be granted until he has had a chance to challenge the constitutionality of the state's death penalty.

    But the High Court, with dissents from Justices Thurgood Marshall and William J. Brennan Jr., who oppose capital punishment, ruled that Mr. Williams had no standing to act in Mr. Judy's behalf.

    The product of a broken home in which his parents were alcoholics and often fought, Mr. Judy began to run afoul of the law at an early age.

    He was commited to Central State Hospital at age 13 after he raped a woman then stabbed her with a knife and struck her with a hatchet. He was subsequently charged with sexual assault against three other women and robbing a fourth.

    At the time of his arrest for the slaying of Mrs. Chasteen, Mr. Judy was on parole in Illinois and was free on bond in Indiana after a robbery charge.

    http://www.nytimes.com/1981/03/09/us...at-prison.html

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