Dustin Higgs Biography Dustin Higgs Wiki
Dustin Higgs, the last federal inmate executed before President Donald Trump left has been on death row for the murder of three women in a Maryland wildlife preserve. This crime resulted in a life sentence for the man who fired the fatal shots.
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Dustin Higgs Age
Dustin Higgs, 48, who is due to be executed in federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana on Friday, said no one has claimed he pulled the trigger. His lawyers argued that it was “arbitrary and unfair” to execute Higgs, while Willis Haynes, the man who shot the women in 1996, escaped the death penalty.
The federal judge who led Higgs’ trial two decades ago says he deserves “little sympathy.”
“He received a fair trial and was sentenced to death by a unanimous jury for a heinous crime,” US District Judge Peter Messitte wrote in a December 29 decision.
Higgs would be the 13th and last federal inmate to be executed since July, when Trump ended a 17-year hiatus on the federal death penalty.
Defense lawyers have secured temporary stays of execution for Higgs and another inmate, Corey Johnson, this week after arguing that their recent COVID-19 infections increased the risk of unnecessary suffering during fatal injections. But higher courts have overturned those rulings and pushed for executions, and Johnson was executed Thursday night.
Shawn Nolan, one of Higgs’ attorneys, sees a clear political agenda in the unprecedented string of federal executions at the end of Trump’s presidency. Higgs is due to be executed five days before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden. A spokesperson for Biden said the Democrat was against the death penalty and would work to end its use.
“Amid the pandemic and everything that’s going on in the country right now, it seems foolish to push forward with these executions,” Nolan said recently. “And especially for Dustin who didn’t shoot anyone. He didn’t.” don’t kill anybody. ”
Higgs’ December 19 pardon states he was a model prisoner and a committed father to a son born soon after his arrest. Higgs had a traumatic childhood and lost his mother to cancer at the age of 10, the petition says.
“Mr. Higgs’ difficult upbringing was not properly presented to the jury at trial,” his lawyers wrote.
In October 2000, a federal jury in Maryland convicted Higgs of first degree murder and kidnapping in the murders of 19-year-old Tamika Black; Mischann Chinn. 23; and Tanji Jackson, 21. His death sentence was the first in Maryland’s modern federal system to end the death penalty in 2013.
Higgs was 23 on the evening of January 26, 1996
Higgs was 23 on the evening of January 26, 1996 when he, Haynes, and a third man, Victor Gloria, picked up the three women in Washington DC and drove them to Higgs’ apartment in Laurel, Maryland for a drink. and listen to music. Before dawn the next morning, an argument between Higgs and Jackson resulted in her grabbing a knife in the kitchen before Haynes persuaded her to drop it.
Gloria said Jackson threatened when she left the apartment with the other women and appeared to write the license plate of Higgs’ van, which shocked him. The three men chased the women in Higgs’ van. Haynes persuaded her to get in the vehicle.
Instead of bringing her home, Higgs led her to a secluded location in the Patuxent National Wildlife Refuge, a Laurel state.
“At that point, one of the women knew something was wrong. She asked if they had to leave here, and Higgs responded to something like that,” a court said. appeal, which upheld Higgs’ death sentence.
Higgs handed his pistol to Haynes, who shot the three women in front of the van before the men left, Gloria said.