Joseph Paul Franklin
Lori Gresham spent all day looking for news about her father, convicted serial killer Joseph Paul Franklin.
Over and over, she typed the name into Google and searched for something new, any glimmer of hope. She knew Franklin's attorney filed a motion for a stay in his execution, which was scheduled for one minute after midnight Wednesday.
But on Tuesday, she told a Times Free Press reporter she didn't believe her father would be alive in the morning. Her relationship with Franklin is based only on phone calls and letters, and she is sickened by his actions. From 1977-80, Franklin targeted Jewish people and black men who mingled with white women.
He faces death in Missouri because he killed a man outside a suburban St. Louis synagogue in 1977. He also bombed a Chattanooga synagogue that same year, and in 1978 he killed a black man here.
Still, Gresham doesn't want her father to die. No matter what he did, she said, he's still her dad. And as Gresham explained this in her Prattville, Ala., bedroom, she refreshed her Google search and found a new Associated Press report.
A federal judge ruled that Franklin will not die, at least not Wednesday.
"Momma!" Gresham yelled to Anita Carden, the racist serial killer's ex-wife. "He got a stay! He got a stay! He got a stay!"
Compiled by staff writer Tyler Jett at at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6476.