25.01.

1996: Last Hanging in the USA

1996: Last Hanging in the USA
Photo Credit To http://www.capitalpunishmentuk.org/dellawr.jpg

For his last meal the condemned requested a well-done steak, a baked potato with sour cream and butter, buttered rolls, peas, and vanilla ice cream. Just before the execution he spoke with his sister, attorney, and the prison chaplain.

This day in 1996 marked the last execution by hanging in the history of the USA. Namely, on that day Bill Bailey from Delaware was sent to the gallows. His execution was also the first hanging in Delaware in 50 years.

Bailey was sentenced to death for two violent murders he had committed back in 1979. It is interesting that he was given the chance to choose between death by lethal injection and hanging. He chose hanging, allegedly because he didn’t want to be “put to sleep”. Since there had been no hangings in Delaware for 50 years, they needed to consult with the other U.S. states about the way to implement such a sentence in practice.

They built a wooden gallows and acquired a special 19-millimeter rope, which was as many as 9.1 meters long. For his last meal the condemned requested a well-done steak, a baked potato with sour cream and butter, buttered rolls, peas, and vanilla ice cream. Just before the execution he spoke with his sister, attorney, and the prison chaplain.

 The gallows were dismantled after Bailey’s execution since the state of Delaware no longer allows such an execution method. Only two U.S. states still allow hanging – Washington and New Hampshire.

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