Death Sentence. The True Story of Velma Barfield's Life, by Jerry Bledsoe

By Jerry Bledsoe

A stunning actual tale of a double existence undone via murder.

When North Carolina farmer Stuart Taylor died after a unexpected ailment, his 46-year-old fianc\u00e9e Velma Barfield, used to be triumph over with grief. Taylor's kinfolk grieved with her—until the post-mortem published lines of arsenic poisoning. grew to become over to the experts by means of her personal son, Velma surprised her family members with extra revelations. This wasn't the 1st time the born-again Christian and religious Sunday tuition instructor had dedicated cold-blooded homicide. attempted via the "world's deadliest prosecutor," and sentenced to demise, Velma became her existence round and received around the globe attention.

With chilling precision, ny instances bestselling writer Bledsoe probes Velma's stark descent into insanity. From her harrowing youth to the stunning crimes that incited a countrywide debate over the dying penalty, to the darkish, ultimate moments of her execution—broadcast survive CNN—Velma Barfield's riveting lifetime of crime and punishment,...

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Additional resources for Death Sentence. The True Story of Velma Barfield's Life, Crimes, and Punishment

Sample text

For after her bitter encounter with Joe Freeman Britt had sent her to death row, she would begin an examination of her life that would lead her to repentance and would cause many people to believe in her redemption. And as she fought for her life in a society torn about the death penalty, she would draw more attention to the morality of capital punishment than any other murderer to that point, her case raising issues that still were being debated two decades later. But she could not foresee that in her despair and dejection as Alf Parnell drove her the two blocks to the Robeson County jail this night.

She couldn’t understand how Velma could do such a thing. Cursing and threatening, Murphy told Velma to get into the car and she obeyed. Her father had not whipped her in some time and, surprisingly, he didn’t when they got home. Instead, Lillie took the strap to her. Afterward, Velma was restricted for a month and told that she was not to see Thomas again. Thomas was a senior that fall. Velma saw him at school and now and then she managed to slip off with friends and meet him surreptitiously. Only he gave her life any promise.

As Lovett left, Parnell took Ronnie aside and explained that Velma would be charged with Stuart’s death and held in jail. The interviewing and paperwork would take several hours. Ronnie and Pam might as well go home; they could do nothing here. He would call them later in the evening. He promised to call Velma’s doctor to get whatever medicines she needed. To calm Ronnie’s fears, he assured him that a close watch would be kept on his mother through the night. Ronnie and Pam agreed that they would meet at her apartment later to await Parnell’s call, and Ronnie left to tell his wife, Joanna,* what had happened.

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