Willie Smith was executed by the State of Alabama for the kidnapping and murder of a woman. According to court documents Willie Smith would kidnap the victim Sharma Johnson who was brought to an ATM and forced to make a withdrawl. Willie Smith would murder Sharma Johnson by shooting her in a cemetery. Willie Smith would be executed by lethal injection on October 21 2012
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Alabama carried out its first execution since March 2020 Thursday night as 52-year-old Willie B. Smith III was executed by lethal injection. Attorney General Steve Marshall said Smith’s time of death was 9:47 p.m.
Smith was convicted of kidnapping and murder in the 1991 killing of 22-year-old Sharma Johnson in Birmingham. According to court documents, Smith took Johnson from an ATM location at gunpoint, robbed her of $80 and shot her execution-style in a cemetery.
Leaders from across Alabama issued statements following the execution Thursday night.
Gov. Kay Ivey:
“Sharma Ruth Johnson was abducted at gunpoint, threatened while in the trunk of the car, terrorized, assaulted, and ultimately, Willie B. Smith, III brutally killed her. In that final moment of this young lady’s short life, Mr. Smith, after learning Ms. Johnson was related to a law enforcement officer, made the choice to put a shotgun to her head, stealing this woman’s future.
“Even after these heinous crimes were committed, Mr. Smith made the choice to burn the vehicle to hide his fingerprints. He knew full well he was doing wrong. This was an absolutely horrendous act against Ms. Johnson. It is also an attack on our men and women in blue.
“In dealing with this unimaginable and tragic loss, her loved ones have endured years of Mr. Smith attempting to avoid due punishment and then a delayed execution earlier this year. Mr. Smith had more time on death row than Ms. Johnson had in this life.
“The evidence in this case was overwhelming, and justice has been rightfully served. The carrying out of Mr. Smith’s sentence sends the message that the state of Alabama will not tolerate these murderous acts. I pray that the loved ones of Ms. Johnson can be closer to finding peace.”
Attorney General Steve Marshall:
“Justice has been served. Tonight, Willie Smith was put to death for the heinous crime he committed nearly three decades ago: the abduction and execution-style murder of an innocent young woman, Sharma Johnson.
“When a capital murderer is due to receive his just punishment, one always hears accusations of “cruel and unusual punishment,” with that term rarely used in a way that accords with its constitutional meaning — and absolutely never used in reference to the victim’s loved ones.
“The family of Sharma Johnson has had to wait 29 years, 11 months, and 25 days to see the sentence of Sharma’s murderer be carried out. Finally, the cruel and unusual punishment that has been inflicted upon them — a decades-long denial of justice — has come to an end.
“I ask the people of Alabama to join me in praying for Sharma’s family and friends, that they might now be able to find peace and closure.”