Virginia has executed a man who killed a hospital security guard and sheriff’s deputy after escaping from custody in 2006. Thirty-five-year-old William Morva was pronounced dead at 9:15 p.m. Thursday after an injection at the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt. He had no last words. It was the first execution carried out in Virginia under a new protocol that makes more of the lethal injection procedure secret.
Previously: Governor Terry McAuliffe released the following statement today on the planned execution of William Morva (9pm tonight): “Over the past several weeks, my staff and I have carefully considered the petition for clemency submitted by William Morva, who was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death for the murder of Montgomery County Deputy Sheriff Corporal Eric Sutphin and hospital security guard Derrick McFarland. We have also reviewed extensive communications from family members of the victims, law enforcement officials, community leaders, and concerned observers from all over the world.
“Consistent with the three previous petitions for commutation of a capital sentence that I have reviewed, I have evaluated Mr. Morva’s submission for evidence that he has been subjected to a miscarriage of justice at any phase of his trial that could have impacted the verdict or his sentence. After extensive review and deliberation, I do not find sufficient cause in Mr. Morva’s petition or case records to justify overturning the will of the jury that convicted and sentenced him.”
“There is no question that, in a carefully orchestrated effort to escape custody while awaiting trial for burglary, robbery and firearms charges, Mr. Morva brutally attacked a deputy sheriff, stole his firearm and used it to murder Mr. McFarland, who was unarmed and had his hands raised as he was shot in the face from a distance of two feet. The next day, Mr. Morva murdered Corporal Sutphin by shooting him in the back of the head.