State of Missouri v. Maurice Oscar Byrd

Cite as 676 SW 2d 494 (Mo.banc 1984)

Maurice Oscar Byrd was executed on August 23, 1991

Case Facts:  On October 23, 1980, employees arrived at the Pope’s Cafeteria in the West County Shopping Mall to discover that three employees had been killed and a fourth employee was still alive, although mortally wounded. She had been shot in each eye and died a little more than a week later. Over four thousand dollars had been taken from the office. At the time of the murders, Maurice Byrd worked for an exterminating service and the cafeteria was one of his customers. On the morning of the killings, the bookkeeper for his employer arrived at work and noticed that Byrd was already there with another person, seated in a car that was different from the one normally driven by him. Byrd began his route that morning in the company car but called in at 10 am to report that he was ill. He returned the company car to his employer and left for the day. Byrd never returned to work and made no attempt to pick up his final paycheck.

Byrd was convicted of four counts of capital murder and sentenced to death on each count.