He killed the doctor who brought him into the world and before he was executed they denied him his last wish

History has a big screen destiny. Surely some studio will buy the rights and start filming it. And with the right casting, it has plenty of ingredients to be a success.

On May 17, 2017, JW Ledford, 45, was executed in Jackson prison, Georgia, after receiving a lethal injection. He had been sentenced to death for the murder, in 1992, of his neighbor, a 73-year-old doctor. That He was not just another neighbor, nor was he just another doctor.

On January 31, 1992, Ledford, who was then 20 years old, asked his neighbor, Dr. Harry Johnston, to accompany him to the supermarket with his truck, as he confessed after his arrest.


Jackson Prison, where JW Ledford was executed.

During the journey, the doctor accused Ledford of having stolen it and, after a struggle, stabbed the doctor multiple times and semi-head. Later he hid his body in a small building near their house.

Ledford, who was an aimless drug addict, later went to the Johnstons’ house, gagged the doctor’s wife, Antoinette, and stole all the money in the house, plus a shotgun, two pistols, and a rifle, which he later sold at two pawn shops.

Both the doctor when offering to take him in his truck, and his wife when opening the door of the house, they did not doubt the boy. It is that this story, full of spices, adds the first of great importance: Dr. Johnston He was the one who brought the murderer into the world. He was the family doctor. And he treated him as a pediatrician throughout his adolescence. He paid him by murdering him.

JW Ledford was executed for having murdered the doctor who brought him into the world.

JW Ledford was executed for having murdered the doctor who brought him into the world.

Not the last wish

But comes the second thick ingredient in this story. The condemned, who spent 25 years on death row, placed an order five days before its execution. The famous last wish granted to those who are to be executed.

Ledford’s lawyers filed an appeal to stop the execution on the grounds that their client did not meet the constitutional conditions to do so because of alleged mental retardation. It was rejected.

And Ledford himself made use of the last wish: he asked to be executed by a firing squad, instead of getting the lethal injection. The state of Georgia does not contemplate this method in its protocols.

The stretcher where the inmate was given the lethal injection.

The stretcher where the inmate was given the lethal injection.

In his dying wish, he argued that the lethal drugs would cause a strong reaction in his body due to the drugs (especially gabapentin) that he used over the past decade to treat a chronic injury. The lethal injection would cause him excruciating pain.

The Supreme Court debated without finding a prompt response, to the point that the execution was delayed more than six hours. When his wish was finally rejected, Ledford dispatched himself with the order for the Last Supper. AND he did not deprive himself of anything.

In 2010 Ronnie Lee Gardner asked to be shot and a judge accepted his wish.

In 2010 Ronnie Lee Gardner asked to be shot and a judge accepted his wish.

Before receiving the lethal injection they served him a mignón filet wrapped with bacon and cheese, ten chicken breasts, several pork steaks, French fries, fried onion, a pecan pie with vanilla ice cream, a smoothie, and a sugary drink. And after lying on the gurney to receive the lethal injection, he passed into another life.

Ledford wanted to emulate another prisoner, Ronnie Lee Gardner, sentenced to death for the murder of a lawyer in 1985. Lethal injection awaited him, but asked, as a last wish, to be executed by a firing squad. A judge from Utah pleased him. And in 2010 he was shot.

Ledford killed the person who brought him into the world. He did not deserve even the last wish. It would have been too much of a reward for him.

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GML