David Funchess was executed by the State of Florida for the murders of two people. According to court documents David Funchess would stab to death two people during a robbery at a lounge. David Funchess would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death. David Funchess would be executed by way of the electric chair on April 22 1986
David Funchess More News
A man who was wounded in Vietnam and convicted in the slaying of two bar employees in Jacksonville in 1974 was executed here today in the electric chair.
The convict, David Livingston Funchess, 39 years old, was executed 90 minutes after the United States Supreme Court voted 7 to 2 not to extend a five-hour stay it issued earlier today. He was pronounced dead at 5:11 P.M.
”I feel sorry for his family,” said Madge Stewart, whose father, Clayton Ragan, was killed, along with Anna Waldrop, by Mr. Funchess. ”They’re going to lose a loved one. But they got to see him 11 years longer than I got to see my loved one.”
She and Betti Shupe, the daughter of Mrs. Waldrop, hugged when told that Mr. Funchess was dead.
The execution had been set for 7 A.M. but was stayed by a Federal appeals court in Atlanta. It was later stayed again by the Supreme Court. Convicted in 1975
Mr. Funchess, diagnosed as suffering from stress stemming from duty in Vietnam, was the 56th person executed in the United States since the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty in 1976, and the third in eight days.
Peter Erlinder, a professor at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minn., who has researched the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder on Vietnam veterans, said Mr. Funchess was the first veteran executed despite being diagnosed as suffering from the disorder.
Mr. Erlinger said at least two Vietnam veterans had been acquitted of murder charges after asserting that they suffered from the disorder, which was not recognized until 1980. Mr. Funchess was convicted in 1975.
Mr. Funchess was condemned to die for killing a woman and a man in a holdup Dec. 16, 1974, in a Jacksonville bar, where he worked a year earlier. Served Two and a Half Months
Mr. Funchess’s lawyer, Jeff Thompson, also a Vietnam veteran, had argued that Mr. Funchess was a victim of post-traumatic stress disorder, an affliction said to have affected thousands of veterans who are unable to adjust to civilian life after combat in an unpopular war.
Symptoms include experiencing flashbacks and suppressing memories of violence.
David Funchess was 19, had no criminal record and had graduated in the top third of his high school class when he was drafted in 1967. He was wounded when he stepped on a land mine after serving two and a half months and was then discharged.
Vernon Bradford, a spokesman for the State Department of Corrections, said Mr. Funchess’s parents, Wenis Funchess and Alice Roberts; his wife, Christine, and three sisters and two brothers visited him from late Monday until early today