Texas death chamber in Huntsville

The execution of the only female on Federal Death Row set to happen this evening was put on hold.  If executed she will be the first woman to face the death penalty by the United States Government in nearly 70 years.  Originally the execution was set to take place on December 8th, 2020 but was delayed to today (January 12, 2020) and has yet again been put on hold pending a competency hearing to assess her mental state.  In December of 2004 Lisa Marie Montgomery killed a 23-year-old, pregnant woman in her home in Skidmore, Missouri. The woman, Bobbie Jo Stinnett, a dog breeder, met Montgomery in a Rat Terrier chatroom online called “Ratter Chatter”.  Logging on under the name “Darlene Fischer” and claiming to also be pregnant the two begin sharing emails and bonding under their assumed mutual connection. On December 16th, 2004, authorities believe that Montgomery, posing as “Darlene Fischer”,  was able to arrange a visit to the home of Bobbie Jo Stinnett by feigning interest in purchasing a dog.  It is believed that it is when Bobbie turned her back to retrieve a puppy to show “Darlene” she was strangled from behind, and her baby cut from her body.  Bobbie was eight months pregnant.  Her mother, Becky Harper, was the one who found her in a pool of blood about an hour after the assault.  She called 911 immediately and described her daughters injuries as looking like her “stomach had exploded”.  Paramedics who responded to the scene were unable to revive her and was pronounced dead at St. Francis Hospital in Maryville.  The very next day Lisa Montgomery was arrested at her farmhouse in Kansas.  She had been faking her pregnancy not only to her online chat friends but to everyone else as well.  The baby miraculously survived and Montgomery was claiming it as her own.  She was sitting in her living room with the baby in her lap when she was arrested.  Thankful the baby was rescued and returned to the father.

On Monday authorities transferred Montgomery from the federal women’s prison here in Texas to the Federal Correction Complex in Terre Haute Indiana.  The family of Bobbie Jo Stinnett traveled to Indiana to witness the execution of the woman who took the life of their loved one and attempted to kidnap the precious baby she was waiting to welcome into the world. However, a stay of execution was ordered pending a competency hearing.

Her attorney is claiming that she is unable to understand the basis for her execution and is suffering from a severe mental illness that was “exacerbated by the lifetime of sexual torture she suffered at the hands of caretakers.”  It is claimed that Montgomery was born brain-damaged due to her mother’s alcoholism which “resulted in incurable and significant psychiatric disabilities.”  There are also claims of rape, physical abuse and torture by her step-father and others and even claims of her being sex trafficked by her own mother.

So what do you think, should she face the death penalty or spend the rest of her life in prison?

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