American female executions 1900 - 2014.

Historical background.

In total, it is thought that around 371 women have been lawfully executed in America since 1632. This constitutes about 2.4% of the 15,500 or so total executions. Click here for a full list of pre Furman executions compiled from the Watt Epsy files.

Most of these executions were by hanging, (306, including eight juveniles), however 15 women were burned at the stake under British rule. (Click here for the American female hanged). The first woman executed under American jurisdiction, as distinct from British, was Basheba Spooner in the state Massachusetts in 1778. She was accused of killing a Sergeant in the Royal Army who she said stole her virtue. She pleaded that she was pregnant, but the plea was rejected and she was hanged. An autopsy showed that she was indeed pregnant.
The youngest girl to be executed was native American Hannah Ocuish who publicly hanged in Connecticut on December 20, 1786, for the murder of another child. She was just 12 years and 9 months old.

Three women have been executed under Federal authority. Mary Ann Surratt was hanged with her fellow conspirators at Fort McNair on July 7, 1865 for their parts in the assassination of President Lincoln.
In 1953 Ethel Rosenburg and Bonnie Heady were put to death. Ethel Rosenburg and her husband, Julius, were electrocuted for espionage on June 19, 1953 and Bonnie Brown Heady went to Missouri’s gas chamber on December 18, 1953, along with her lover Carl Austin Hall, for the kidnap-murder of 6 year old Bobby Greenlease in Kansas City. 
Martha Place became the first of 27 women (including one juvenile) to die in the electric chair when she was executed on March 20, 1899 at New York's Auburn prison for the murder of her stepdaughter Ida. Ethel Juanita Spinelli was the first of seven women to die by lethal gas, in California on November 21, 1941. Velma Barfield was the first women to die by lethal injection, in 1984.

Modern times.

15 women have been executed between November 1984 and September 2014, two by electrocution and thirteen by lethal injection. Less than 1% of post 1977 executions have been of females (15 of 1389 to September 2014).  61 women were on death row as of January 2013, accounting for just 2.0% of the current death row population.  (see below for names and states) Click here for a photo of each of them.

Listing of female executions in chronological order.
Please click here for a short bio in .pdf format, of each of these women, together with photos where available.

Female executions 1900 - 2014.

Name

Approx
Age

State

Execution date
mm/dd/yy

Method

Race

Crime

Dora Wright

38

Oklahoma

07/17/03

Hanging

Black

Murder of a seven year old girl.

Mary Rogers

23

Vermont

12/08/05

Hanging

White

Murder of husband.

Mary O’Brien Farmer

29

New York

03/29/09

Electrocution

White

Ax murder of neighbor.

Virginia Christian

17

Virginia

08/16/12

Electrocution

Black

Murder of Mrs. Ida Virginia Belote.

Pattie Perdue

-

Mississippi

01/13/22

Hanging

Black

Murder of white man.

Ann Knight

-

Mississippi

10/13/22

Hanging

Black

Murder of husband.

Ruth Snyder

32

New York

01/12/28

Electrocution

White

Murder of husband.

Ada LeBoeuf

38

Louisiana

02/01/29

Hanging

White

Contract murder of husband.

Selena Gilmore

-

Alabama

01/24/30

Electrocution

Black

Shooting murder of waiter.

Eva Dugan

51

Arizona

02/21/30

Hanging

White

Murder of employer.

Irene Schroeder

22

Pennsylvania

02/23/31

Electrocution

White

Shooting of policeman.

Anna Antonio

28

New York

09/08/34

Electrocution

White

Contract killing of husband.

Julia Moore

-

Louisiana

02/08/35

Hanging

Black

Murder of Elliot Wilson.

May Carey

55

Delaware

06/07/35

Hanging

White

Murder of her brother.

Eva Coo

40

New York

06/27/35

Electrocution

White

Murder of lodger.

Mary Francis Creighton

38

New York

07/16/35

Electrocution

White

Poisoning of landlady.

Mary Holmes

35

Mississippi

04/29/37

Hanging

Black

Robbery murder of her employer.

Marie Porter

38

Illinois

01/28/38

Electrocution

White

Murder of her brother.

Anna Marie Hahn

32

Ohio

12/07/38

Electrocution

White

Poisoning for gain.

Ethel Juanita Spinelli

52

California

11/21/41

Lethal gas (first)

White

Murder of a member of her gang.

Toni Jo Henry

26

Louisiana

11/28/42

Electrocution

White

Shot a man in a vain attempt to free her husband from prison.

Rosanna Phillips

26

N. Carolina

01/01/43

Lethal gas

Black

Axe murder of employer.

Sue Logue

43

S. Carolina

01/15/43

Electrocution

White

Murder of sheriff.

Mildred Johnson

23

Mississippi

05/19/44

Electrocution

Black

Beat her landlady to death.

Helen Fowler

36

New York

11/16/44

Electrocution

Black

Robbery/murder of customer.

Bessie Mae Smith (Williams)

19

N. Carolina

29/12/44

Lethal gas

Black

Murder of a taxi driver.

Lena Baker

44

Georgia

03/05/45

Electrocution

Black

Shooting her employer.
Pardoned in 2005

Corinne Sykes

20

Pennsylvania

10/14/46

Electrocution

Black

Stabbing her employer

Rosa Marie Stinette

49

S. Carolina

01/17/47

Electrocution

Black

Contract killing of husband

Louise Peete

64

California

04/11/47

Lethal gas

White

Shooting of lady supervising her parole.

Martha Jule Beck

30

New York

03/08/51

Electrocution

White

Drowning a child

Ethel Rosenberg

38

Federal
(New York)

06/19/53

Electrocution

White

Espionage. Executed with her husband, Julius.

Earle Dennison

55

Alabama

09/04/53

Electrocution

White

Poisoning of niece.

Bonnie Brown Heady

41

Federal (Missouri)

12/18/53

Lethal gas

White

Kidnap & murder of a 6 year old boy. Executed with her lover, Carl Hall

Blanch "Dovie" Dean

54

Ohio

01/15/54

Electrocution

White

Poisoned her husband.

Betty Butler

26

Ohio

06/12/54

Electrocution

Black

Murder of lesbian friend.

Barbara Graham

32

California

06/03/55

Lethal gas

White

Robbery murder.

Rhonda Belle Martin

50

Alabama

10/11/57

Electrocution

White

Poisoning husband, plus 5 others.

Elizabeth Duncan

58

California

08/08/62

Lethal gas

White

Murder of daughter in law.

Velma Barfield

52

N. Carolina

11/02/84

Lethal Injection

White

Poisoning of husband(s).

Karla Faye Tucker

37

Texas

02/03/98

Lethal Injection

White

Pick ax murders.

Judias Buenoano

54

Florida

03/30/98

Electrocution

White

Husband murders.

Betty Lou Beets

62

Texas

02/24/00

Lethal Injection

White

Husband murders.

Christina Riggs

28

Arkansas

05/03/00

Lethal Injection

White

Murder of her two children.

Wanda Jean Allen

41

Oklahoma

01/11/01

Lethal Injection

Black

Murder of her lesbian lover.

Marilyn Kay Plantz

40

Oklahoma

05/01/01

Lethal Injection

White

Contract killing of her husband.

Lois Nadean Smith

61

Oklahoma

12/04/01

Lethal Injection

White

Murder of son's former girlfriend.

Lynda Lyon Block

54

Alabama

05/10/02

Electrocution

White

Murder of police officer.

Aileen Wournoss

46

Florida

10/09/02

Lethal Injection

White

Serial killer of seven men.

Frances Newton

40

Texas

09/14/05

Lethal Injection

Black

Murder of her husband & 2 children.

Teresa Lewis

41

Virginia

09/23/10

Lethal Injection

White

Contract killing of her husband & stepson.

Kimberly McCarthy

52

Texas

06/26/13

Lethal Injection

Black

Robbery murder of elderly neighbor.

Suzanne Basso

59

Texas

02/05/14

Lethal Injection

White

Torture murder of her “boyfriend” for gain.

Lisa Ann Coleman

38

Texas

09/17/14

Lethal Injection

Black

Murder of her girlfriend’s son

 

Women on death row as at 12/31/2012, by state, oldest sentencing date first.

Name

Race

State

Blackmon, Patricia

black

Alabama

Gobble, Tierra

white

Alabama

Scott, Christie Michelle

white

Alabama

Milke, Debra Jean

white

Arizona

Adrian, Wendi

white

Arizona

Forde, Shawna

white

Arizona

Coffman, Cynthia

white

California

McDermott, Maureen

white

California

Alfaro, Maria

Latina

California

Thompson, Catherine

black

California

Carrington, Celeste

black

California

Samuels, Mary E.

white

California

Dalton, Kerry Lyn

white

California

Buenrostro, Dora

Latina

California

Gonzalez, Veronica

Latina

California

Eubanks, Susan

white

California

Nieves, Sandi

white

California

Caro, Socorro

Latina

California

Michaud, Michelle

white

California

Rodriguez, Angelina

Latina

California

Snyder, Janeen Marie

white

California

Sarinana, Cathy Lynn

white

California

Martin, Valerie Dee

white

California

Nelson, Tanya Jaime

Asian

California

Rottiers, Brooke Marie

white

California

Williams, Manling Tsang

Asian

California

Brookshire, Kelly

white

Georgia

Montgomery, Lisa

white

Federal (MO)

Cole, Tiffany Ann

white

Florida

Allen, Margaret

black

Florida

Cardona, Ana Marie

Latina

Florida

Carr, Emilia Lily

Latina

Florida

Brown, Tina Lasonya

black

Florida

Row, Robin Lee

white

Idaho

Brown, Debra

black

Indiana

Caudill, Virginia

white

Kentucky

Frank, Antoinette

black

Louisiana

Holmes, Brandy

white

Louisiana

Byrom, Michelle

white

Mississippi

Chamberlain, Lisa Jo

white

Mississippi

Jennings, Patricia

white

North Carolina

Moore, Blanche

white

North Carolina

Parker, Carlette

black

North Carolina

Walters, Christina

Amer. Indian

North Carolina

Tharp, Michelle

white

Pennsylvania

Roberts, Donna

white

Ohio

Andrew, Brenda

white

Oklahoma

McAnulty, Angela D.

white

Oregon

Walter, Shonda

black

Pennsylvania

Pike, Christa Gail

white

Tennessee

Henderson, Cathy

white

Texas

Sheppard, Erica

black

Texas

Routier, Darlie

white

Texas

Holberg, Brittany ()

white

Texas

Basso, Susan

white

Texas (executed 02/05/14)

Carty, Linda

black

Texas

McCarthy, Kimberly

black

Texas (executed 06/26/13)

Coleman, Lisa Ann

black

Texas (executed 09/17/14)

Lucio, Melissa Elizabeth

Latina

Texas

Cargill, Kimberly

white

Texas

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