Donald Dillbeck is scheduled to be executed tonight, February 23, 2023, by the State of Florida. According to court documents Donald Dillbeck was serving a life sentence for the murder of a police officer when he escaped and would stab to death a woman during a carjacking. For his second murder Donald Dillbeck would be sentenced to death.
Donald Dillbeck lawyers have been trying to get his death sentence commuted to life in prison due to mental issues stating that he suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome. Donald Dilbeck has been on Florida death row since 1990
Donald Dillbeck Execution More News
In a first since 2019, a convicted killer is set to be executed in the Florida State Prison. Donald Dillbeck, who murdered a law enforcement officer and a woman during a carjacking, is scheduled to be put to death after Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed his death warrant.
The death chamber in Florida has been silent for three and a half years, which is the longest time between executions in 40 years. Gary Ray Bowles, who killed half a dozen men in 1994, was the last person to be executed in the state in August 2019.
Dillbeck’s execution has been a subject of debate among anti-death penalty advocates. Maria DiLiberato, the head of Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, argued that Dillbeck should have been granted an exemption from execution due to a “mental condition” caused by his alcoholic mother, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.
“Killing him will not bring back the people that he killed. If that were true, we’d have a much different argument about the death penalty,” DiLiberato said.
Deputy Lynn Hall was fatally shot by Dillbeck in 1979 at the Lee County park that now bears his name. Dillbeck was sentenced to life but escaped in 1990 in a minimum-security work detail. Days later, he fatally stabbed Faye Vann in a Tallahassee mall parking lot and was sentenced to death.
Michael Sheedy, the executive director for the Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops, expressed his deep sadness for the victims and their families. He joins other anti-death penalty groups in urging the governor to spare Dillbeck’s life.
“If we’re going to say killing is ‘wrong,’ but we kill in return, we’re not making sense,” Sheedy said.
Barring a stay, Dillbeck will die by lethal injection and become the 100th person executed since the death penalty was reinstated in Florida in the 1970s.
Donald Dillbeck Execution February 23 2023
For the first time in nearly four years, Florida executed a man Thursday for a carjacking that led to the brutal murder of a woman more than three decades ago.
Donald Dillbeck, 59, was pronounced dead at Florida State Prison at 6:13 p.m. ET, the governor’s office said. Dillbeck, who died by lethal injection, was condemned in the fatal stabbing of Faye Lamb Vann, 44, in a Tallahassee mall parking lot.
The U.S. Supreme Court had declined a request by Dillbeck’s attorneys to stop his execution.
The death marked Florida’s 100th execution since the death penalty was reinstated by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1976 and executions resumed in the state in 1979.
At the time of the murder, Dillbeck was a fugitive after escaping a work-release catering job in Gadsden County, where he was serving a life sentence for killing Lee County Deputy Dwight Lynn Hall, 31, in 1979. Dillbeck was 15 at the time
Prior to that, he stabbed a man in Indiana while trying to steal a CB radio, court records show. Dillbeck fled to Florida, where the deputy found him in a Fort Myers Beach parking lot. While Hall was searching him, Dillbeck hit the deputy in the groin and ran. Hall tackled him and Dillbeck took Hall’s gun and shot him twice.
He then walked to the shopping mall, where Vann was waiting for her family, approached her car with the knife and demanded a ride, court records show.
Vann tried to drive off and fought back, but Dillbeck stabbed her more than 20 times and slit her throat, court records show. He crashed the car a short time later and was captured running from the scene.
On the day of his execution, Donald Dillbeck went through his normal routine, Department of Corrections spokeswoman Michelle Glady said Thursday.
He visited with his spiritual adviser, she said.
At 9:45 a.m., he had his last meal: fried shrimp, mushrooms, onion rings, butter pecan ice cream, pecan pie and a chocolate bar, the Tallahassee Democrat, part of the USA TODAY Network reported.
The curtain between the death chamber and the viewing room opened at 6 p.m. Thursday.
His last words: “I know I hurt people when I was young. I really messed up.” He also criticized Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, saying “he has done a lot worse. He’s taken a lot from a lot of people. I speak for all men, women and children. He’s put his foot on our necks.”
The execution began at 6:02 p.m., and Dillbeck closed his eyes shortly thereafter. He was declared dead roughly 10 minutes later.