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James French

James French

American murderer
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro American murderer
Countries United States of America
Occupations Criminal Murshid
Gender male
Birth 1 January 1936
Death 1 January 1966
The details
Biography

James D. French (ca. 1936 – 10 August 1966) was an American criminal who was the last person executed under Oklahoma's death penalty laws prior to Furman v. Georgia, which suspended capital punishment in America from 1972 until 1976. He was also the only prisoner executed in the United States that year. Already in prison for life for killing a motorist who had picked him up from hitchhiking in 1958, but allegedly afraid to commit suicide, French murdered his cellmate, apparently to compel the state to execute him.

French's last words before his death by electric chair were "How's this for your headline? 'French Fries'".

This was the last execution by electric chair in the United States before Furman v. Georgia; after the moratorium on capital punishment was lifted, the first electrocution was John Spenkelink in 1979 in Florida. Gary Gilmore was the first execution carried out by firing squad 1977 in Utah.

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References
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:E3ILiL1jb-AJ:www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,839461,00.html?promoid%3Dgooglep+%22James+D.+French%22+1966&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=4&gl=us&client=firefox-a
http://www.oscn.net/applications/oscn/DeliverDocument.asp?CiteID=55486
https://books.google.com/books?id=aV16jC7gF68C&pg=PA178&lpg=PA178&dq=james+french+killed+motorist&source=bl&ots=-_5EUaCsXP&sig=2SA4Rg4_fY9uxsyB8-J4ImnjU2I&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uaMJVaLhLciuggS9jYDACg&ved=0CCoQ6AEwAg
https://web.archive.org/web/20150318161219/https://books.google.com/books?id=aV16jC7gF68C&pg=PA178&lpg=PA178&dq=james%20french%20killed%20motorist&source=bl&ots=-_5EUaCsXP&sig=2SA4Rg4_fY9uxsyB8-J4ImnjU2I&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uaMJVaLhLciuggS9jYDACg&ved=0CCoQ6AEwAg
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