December 21, 2014
BONNE TERRE, Mo. (AP) - White supremacist serial killer Joseph Paul Franklin has been put to death in Missouri. It was the state's first execution in nearly three years.
The 63-year-old Franklin targeted blacks and Jews in a cross-country killing rampage from 1977 to 1980. But he was sentenced to death for just one of the killings - a sniper shooting outside a suburban St. Louis synagogue in 1977.
Franklin was convicted of seven other murders across the country and claimed responsibility for up to 20 overall. And he also admitted shooting and wounding civil rights leader Vernon Jordan and Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt, who's been paralyzed since the 1978 attack.
Franklin's fate was sealed when early this morning the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a federal appeals court decision overturning stays granted on Tuesday.