INDIANA, USA. ALAN MATHENEY EXECUTED
September 28, 2005: the state of Indiana executed Alan Matheney, a man who bludgeoned his ex-wife to death while on temporary leave from prison, where he was serving a sentence for nearly killing her.
Officials at the Indiana State Prison said Matheney, 54, was pronounced dead at 1:27 am local time after an injection of lethal chemicals.
"I love my family and my children. I'm sorry for the pain I've caused them. I thank my friends who stood by me ... I'm sure my grandchildren will grow up happy and healthy in the care of their wonderful parents," Matheney said in a final statement read by his lawyer, Steven Schutte.
Given an eight-hour leave from an Indianapolis prison in 1989, Matheney drove to the northern Indiana home of his ex-wife, Lisa Bianco, broke in, chased her down in the street and beat her with the butt of a stolen shotgun until the weapon broke into pieces.
Pieces of wood were found embedded in Bianco's skull.
The murder led then-Gov. Evan Bayh to suspend prisoner leaves and fire two prison employees who neglected to inform Bianco that Matheney was temporarily free. The temporary leaves were designed to reward good behavior and aid inmates' readjustment to society.
At the time of the murder, Matheney was serving an eight-year sentence for a 1987 assault in which he raped and beat Bianco. A month after the couple's 1985 divorce, he had kidnapped their two daughters.
He was the 41st person put to death this year in the United States, and the 985th since capital punishment was restored in 1976. It was Indiana's fifth execution this year, the most since 1938 when the state put eight people to death. (Sources: Reuters, 28/09/2005)