On Thursday, one of the longest-held inmates in Florida will be put to death for two murders he committed in 1984: one, a stabbing of a 14-year-old babysitter who was watching two sleeping children, and another, an attack with a hammer on a mother of two.
The execution of Duane Owen is set for 6 p.m. EDT tonight at Florida State Prison in Starke. For the r@pe and stabbing of 14-year-old Karen Slattery on March 24, 1984, and the r@pe and murder of 38-year-old Georgianna Worden in May 1984, both in Palm Beach County, he was sentenced to death.
Two further female victims of Owen’s attacks in Palm Beach County are still alive. Owen was the victim of four separate assaults immediately before and after he turned 23. Owen, at 62 years old, is one of 293 inmates now awaiting execution in Florida. He received six life sentences in addition to the two death sentences.
If the lethal injection goes ahead, it will be the fourth execution in Florida this year after the state has not carried out an execution since 2019. In the months leading up to his announcement that he is running for president, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed each death sentence.
The below tweet veriies the news:
Florida set to execute man convicted of 1984 murders, rapes while children slept nearby https://t.co/LzJxKClxLe
— Live5News (@Live5News) June 15, 2023
Slattery was brutally attacked at a Delray Beach home while caring for two sleeping toddlers. Worden was beaten with a hammer and r@ped by Owen two months later when she was sleeping in her Boca Raton home.
Court documents state that the next morning, while getting ready for school, one of Worden’s children discovered her dead. Both Delray Beach and Boca Raton may be found in Palm Beach County, which is located about 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Miami.
The defense team for Owen claimed that his lunacy prevented him from being executed. His most recent appeal was denied by both the state and federal supreme courts last week.
This month, a defense psychologist testified that Owen believes his victims’ souls live on in him through absorption. Owen’s legal team has claimed that their client is schizophrenic and has hallucinations.
The California Examiner is a great source for current events if you live in the Golden State:
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The prosecution maintained that Owen’s mental illness is no excuse for not executing him because he understands that death is punishment for his actions. State psychiatrists testified that Owen’s discussion of his schizophrenia during evaluations is an act, and that he displays no other symptoms of schizophrenia.
Psychiatrists for the prosecution testified that Owen has a decent memory, doesn’t come across as presenting as a female, and that gender dysphoria doesn’t make people more aggressive or induce delusional thinking, despite the defense’s claims that he has dementia and gender dysphoria.
Court documents state that witnesses testified that Owen has s*xual sadistic tendencies.
According to court documents, Owen lost his mother when he was 11 years old, and his father committed suicide when he was 13 years old. They further say that when he was younger, he was the target of both physical and s*xual abuse.
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