November 17th 2023.
Casey McWhorter was executed yesterday in Alabama, 30 years after committing a pre-planned robbery that ended with the shooting and killing of a man. Before his death, the 49-year-old took the opportunity to leave a message for young people who are struggling with their mental health.
McWhorter was only 18 when he was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death for shooting and killing 34-year-old Edward Lee Williams. Along with two other teenagers, including Edward’s 15-year-old son, he had conspired to steal money from Edward and kill him.
The situation escalated when Edward unexpectedly came home while his house was being ransacked. Edward began fighting with his son, and McWhorter entered from another room. When Edward noticed McWhorter, he began swinging at him. McWhorter then did the only thing he could think of and started shooting with the other gun he had.
McWhorter's final words before his execution were full of remorse for the victim’s family and love for his own. He also addressed accusations of domestic abuse facing the prison warden executing him, calling him a ‘habitual abuser of women’.
McWhorter said he had been a ‘very confused kid’ when he carried out the robbery and shot Edward. He urged other young people to think before acting, and said his actions ruined his life and he doesn’t want other people to go through what he has.
His lawyers had requested a stay on his execution on the grounds of his age at the time of the crime and issues with chemicals used in Alabama’s lethal injections. However, the US Supreme Court declined to halt his execution.
McWhorter was pronounced dead at 6.56pm yesterday at the Holman Correctional Facility prison in Atmore, southwest Alabama. He had a final meal of Turtles candy, and spoke to his mother, stepfather, spiritual adviser, friends, and attorney on the phone before his death.
McWhorter's execution was the second in the state of Alabama this year. Even though he was only 18 when the crime took place, prosecutors argued that he had ‘methodically gathered items from the home, including retrieving Edward’s wallet from his dead body before driving away in Williams’ pickup truck’.
McWhorter’s story serves as a warning to young people of the consequences of making a wrong decision. His final words were a reminder that one bad choice can have life-altering consequences.
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