South Carolina’s new firing squad facilities are ready to send the first death row inmate to be executed in a decade to meet his maker should he opt for it as his preferred manner of death.
The state Supreme Court has set a date for the execution of Richard Bernard Moore, who was sentenced to death in 2001 over the killing of a convenience store clerk, and he will have the choice of a firing squad or lethal injection, should these options be available, over the newly established state method, the electric chair.
In 1999, Moore entered a Spartanburg convenience store with the intent to rob it to support his crack cocaine addiction.
A jury convicted him in a matter of hours after hearing the facts of the case, which established that, after a scuffle with the clerk who pulled a gun on Moore that he managed to wrestle away before pulling a second weapon, the accused fired upon and killed the man and then left a trail of blood all around the store as he searched for cash, wounded in his arm.
Moore left the store with $1,408 before going to a nearby residence to get his fix.
Then-prosecutor Trey Gowdy (who would go on to have a formidable career over the next two decades, as you may know) also flew in witnesses from Michigan to testify of Moore’s violent history of robbery and assault.
After being handed the death sentence, Moore’s attorneys expected years of appeals, but his conviction was ultimately upheld in the state Supreme Court in 2020, and thanks to legislation that ended the decade pause in executions, a date has now finally been set.
Last year, lawmakers amended the state execution law to end the lengthy pause on executions, establishing the electric chair as the primary method and firing squad and lethal injection as alternate options, WYFF reported.
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In March, the South Carolina Department of Corrections released its protocols for death by firing squad, following the completion of a $53,600 renovation on the Columbia death chamber, which was…