Alabama sets new execution date for inmate for 1991 murder

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Willie B. Smith III

FILE – This undated file photo provided by the Alabama Department of Corrections shows Willie B. Smith III. Alabama has rescheduled the execution of Willie B. Smith III who had his lethal injection called off in February when the U.S. Supreme Court sided with his request to have his personal pastor with him in the death chamber. The Alabama Supreme Court has now set an Oct. 21 execution date. (Alabama Department of Corrections via AP)

October 02 2021 06:00 pm

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama has rescheduled the execution of an Alabama inmate who had his lethal injection called off in February when the U.S. Supreme Court sided with his request to have his personal pastor with him in the death chamber.

The Alabama Supreme Court has now set an Oct. 21 execution date for 51-year-old Willie B. Smith III. He was convicted of the 1991 kidnapping and murder of 22-year-old Sharma Ruth Johnson in Birmingham.

Prosecutors said Smith abducted Johnson at gunpoint from an ATM, stole $80 from her and shot her in a cemetery.

State lawyers wrote that Smith will be allowed to have his personal pastor minister present.

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