One of five federal death row inmates set for execution says he was molested by priest

Daily Mail

August 28, 2019

By Keith Griffith

Attorneys for one of the five federal death row inmates newly scheduled for execution have opened up multiple last-ditch legal challenges in a bid to spare his life, including petitioning President Donald Trump for clemency.

Wesley Ira Purkey, 67, is scheduled to be executed on December 13, 2019 for the rape, murder and dismemberment of 16-year-old Jennifer Long in his Kansas home in 1998. He was also convicted of beating 80-year-old Mary Bales to death with a hammer.

Last month, Attorney General Bill Barr announced that the federal government would resume executions for the first time since 2003, setting execution dates for Purkey and four other death row inmates whom he called ‘the worst criminals.’

‘Mr. Purkey is not ‘the worst of the worst,” his attorney Rebecca Woodman said in a statement to on Tuesday. ‘He is a man who grew up in a house of horrors, beaten and humiliated by both of his parents and subjected to extensive and ongoing sexual abuse by members of his family.’

Woodman went on to say that Purkey had been ‘demeaned and brutalized’ by Catholic nuns, and ‘repeatedly molested’ by a priest.

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