Published on: Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Lisa Montgomery, 52, was killed by lethal injection at the Federal Correctional Complex in Terre Haute, Indiana, and pronounced dead at 1:31 a.m. (Eastern Time) Wednesday (article available here). She was the first woman to be executed by the federal government since 1953 and was the only woman on death row.

A federal judge granted Mrs. Montgomery a stay of execution Tuesday for a competency hearing -- just hours before she was scheduled to be executed.

The execution followed an intense, 11th-hour, court battle over Mrs. Montgomery's life. The Supreme Court vacated several lower-court rulings in her favor late Tuesday by her defense attorneys who argued that she should have been given a competency hearing to prove her severe mental illness, which would have made her ineligible for the death penalty.

She was the 11th federal death row inmate to be executed since July 2020 by the Trump administration after a 17-year hiatus in federal executions. Executions carried out during the lame-duck period have been the first of their kind since the late 19th century.

"The government stopped at nothing in its zeal to kill this damaged and delusional woman," her attorney said in a statement. "Lisa Montgomery's execution was far from justice."

Two more executions are scheduled this week, for Corey Johnson on Thursday and Dustin Higgs on Friday. Both of their executions have been halted by a federal court as the men are still recovering from Covid-19. Prosecutors are appealing the ruling on Messrs. Higgs and Johnson.