A death row inmate from Henry County now has a chance to be re-sentenced and the family of the murder victim is voicing concerns about the case. The victim's daughter says the killer may actually out-live her.
Willie McNair's guilt is not in question. He confessed to the crime. But a federal judge wants him resentenced.
McNair got the death penalty for the 1990 stabbing death of 68-year-old Ella Foy Riley near Abbeville. The case was overturned on appeal and the second jury recommended life without parole. But, Judge Ed Jackson again sentenced McNair to die.
Now, Federal Judge Myron Thompson has ordered a third sentencing hearing and opened old wounds for the victim's family.
Now, 14 years after the murder, Pat Jones says even if McNair gets the death penalty again, she may not live to see him executed.
McNair now has a shot at life without parole because a federal judge says the confessed killer's attorneys did not adequately represent him.
The attorney general's office has filed a motion asking Judge Thompson to stay his re-sentencing order while the decision is appealed to a higher court.
Since the murder, Pat Jones has become the local leader of a support group called VOCAL. It stands for Victims Of Crime And Leniency. She helped open an office in Dothan earlier this month.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or firstname.lastname@example.org.