Tonight’s Execution: Elmer Carroll, Florida

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Correction: This story was mistakenly autopublished a day early. Elmer Carroll is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, May 29, not Tuesday, May 28.

Update: Elmer Carroll has been executed.

Tonight Florida carried out the first of three scheduled executions in the next six weeks, with the lethal injection of Elmer Leon Carroll.

According to the case summary, Carroll, 56, was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of 10-year-old Christine McGowan. From the summary:

“Robert Rank attempted to wake his stepdaughter, Christine McGowan, on the morning of 10/30/90 and, when she did not answer his calls, Rank went to McGowan’s room.  He noticed her door, which was open the night before, was closed.  Upon entering the room, Rank discovered McGowan face down on the bed.  She had blood between her legs and her body was cold to the touch.  Rank then noticed that the front door was slightly open and his construction truck was missing.  Police investigators at the scene determined that McGowan had been raped and strangled to death, and issued a bulletin regarding the stolen construction truck.

Upon hearing a radio bulletin regarding the stolen construction truck, Debbie Hyatt notified police that she remembered seeing the abandoned truck and a man, later identified as Elmer Carroll, walking easterly away from the truck.  As a result of Hyatt’s tip, Carroll was arrested.  When law enforcement officers searched Carroll for weapons, they found a box cutter and the keys to the stolen construction truck.

Information presented at trial revealed that Carroll was a resident of the halfway house located next door to the victim’s home and that Carroll had remarked to other residents about the “cute” girl next door.  DNA evidence recovered from the scene matched Carroll’s saliva, semen and pubic hair.”

According to the Orlando Sentinel, McGowan’s mother and step-father both plan to attend the execution, as well as Orange-Osceola State Attorney Jeff Ashton, one of the two prosecutors on the case.

“Elmer Carroll’s a monster, and he always will be,” Ashton told the Sentinel. “To feel no compassion or pity of any kind for this child, that is the very definition of a monster in my mind.”

Carroll’s attorneys filed an appeal to stop the execution, arguing that:

1) he was mentally ill,

2) that the nature of Florida’s death penalty was unconstitutional under the 8th amendment,

3) that his execution would be unconstitutional under the 8th amendment because of the “inordinate length of time that Mr. Carroll has spend on death row” and

4) that his clemency process was applied in “an arbitrary and capricious manner.”

However, the appeal was denied by the Florida Supreme Court, who affirmed the lower court’s ruling that the claims were without merit on May 15. His attorneys then took the appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, but on Wednesday the Court denied Carroll’s appeal, in which his lawyers argued that he should have been considered mentally ill at the time of the crime. Carroll was scheduled to die by lethal injection at 6 p.m. ET at Florida State Prison in Starke.

According to the Associated Press, Carroll spend his final hours with two visitors, neither of whom was family. He visited with a Catholic priest and a mitigation specialist.

Carroll’s final meal was served at 10 a.m. and consisted of eggs, bacon, biscuits, a whole sliced tomato, a fruit salad with strawberries, papaya, peaches, pineapple and tropical fruit, an avocado and a can of Carnation milk.

Carroll declined to make a final statement, and the execution began promptly at 6:01 p.m. local time. He was pronounced dead at 6:12 p.m.

Related Reading:

Execution Looms For Felon Who Raped, Killed Girl, 10

Child-Killer Rapist Fails In Appeal, Faces Death May 29

US Supreme Court Denies Stay Of Execution For Florida Man

Killer Has Bacon And Eggs For Last Meal

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2 thoughts on “Tonight’s Execution: Elmer Carroll, Florida

  1. Carla Smith says:

    Weve been waiting all these years for this day. Christina was my daughters best friend. Elmer Carroll should have been killed years ago. After tonight I hope Christina can rest in peace and Elmer Carroll can burn in hell.

  2. charmy says:

    Carla, you are sooooooooooooo right!!! all that time he spend on DR ….is his own fault…he had should go the next day after sentence..praying for the victims family..and for christina to rest in peace FINALLY! Elmer is going to Hell right NOW …yeah

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