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Missouri execution: Herbert Smulls executed in Missouri for murder of jeweler

Hebert Smuls, who killed a jeweler during a 1991 robbery was executed for the crime late Wednesday, marking the state’s third lethal injection in as many months.
Hebert Smuls, who killed a jeweler during a 1991 robbery was executed for the crime late Wednesday, marking the state’s third lethal injection in as many months.Missouri State Police

Missouri execution time came late Wednesday (Jan. 29) for Herbert Smulls. It is the third execution in Missouri within the last three months, with this one stemming from the 1991 robbery and murder of a jeweler. According to a report from Yahoo! News, the case stems from the robbery and convicted killing of Stephen Honickman on July 27, 1991. His wife, Florence, was also badly injured during the attack in a suburban St. Louis jewelry shop.

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There had been several stays given in this case, including one that took place as recently as Tuesday (Jan. 28) when his attorneys filed another appeal. This time it was for the state not releasing information on how it had obtained the drug that would be used when Smulls was scheduled to be executed. The appeals were all cleared and the state moved ahead with the schedule on Wednesday night.

Speaking about why Herbert Smulls became the latest Missouri execution, St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch didn't pull any punches. He stated that, "It was a horrific crime. With all the other arguments that the opponents of the death penalty are making, it’s simply to try to divert the attention from what this guy did, and why he deserves to be executed.”

The co-conspirator in this crime was 15-year-old Norman Brown, who helped rob the store as the two victims were shot. He is currently serving a life sentence without the chance of parole stemming from a 1993 conviction.

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