State of Missouri v. William R. Jones

749 S.W.2d 356 (Mo.banc 1988)

William R. Jones was executed at 12:04 a.m., November 20, 2002.

Case Facts
: William Jones met Stanley Albert in late 1985. In November of 1985 Mr. Albert purchased a white 1985 Camaro Z28 automobile. After Mr. Albert’s purchase, Jones told a few of his friends that his father was going to help him purchase a new white Camaro. 

On January 16, 1986 at 4:30 p.m. Mr. Albert pulled up in front of Jones’ apartment in the Camaro. Before joining Mr. Albert, Jones borrowed a blanket from his roommate stating that his new car had arrived and he didn’t want to get it dirty when he went to pick up some tires. 

Later that same evening Jones offered his roommate a ride in the Camaro. White riding around Jones crushed a pair of sunglasses remarking that the owner would no longer need them.

The next day Jones purchased a shovel with his roommate’s credit card and returned later in the afternoon. He told his roommate that he was going to take a nap because, “it gets pretty tiring when you drag a dead man through the woods.”

On Sunday, January 19, 1986 Jones picked up a female friend in Topeka, Kansas to drive her to Indianapolis, Indiana in the Camaro. East of Kansas City, the Missouri State Highway Patrol attempted to stop Jones for speeding. Jones outran the police and abandoned the car in Malta Bend, Missouri. The police Located the car with stolen Kansas license plates. Jones was arrested later that day.

Mr. Albert did not report to work on January 17, 1986 and was not seen again. On March 2, 1986 his body was found wrapped in a blanket in a wooded area outside Independence, Missouri. The blanket was identical to the one that Jones had borrowed from his roommate in January. Mr. Albert had been shot five times in the neck and the chest. The Medical Examiner estimated that Mr. Albert had been dead between two weeks and several months. Three of the bullets were determined to have been fired from the same weapon and the other two might have been.

When police searched the home of William Jones they found shells of the same type that had been found at the scene of the crime. Police also found a watch that had belonged to Mr. Albert and his license plates which had been on the Camaro.

Last Statement of William Jones: “I regret what has happened, I do not deserve death for it. God forgive those for what they do not understand what they do. To the family of the victim Stanley Albert, I am sorry for what has happened and that you suffered this great loss, but after 17 years of my incarceration, does this really give you a sense of closure-or simply a sense of vengeance? I pray for you all. To my wife, fathers, mother and nephew Zakary, I will see you soon in the heavens above. My darling Gerti my wife, I love you endlessly my honeybird. Till we meet again, stay strong. Love Billy”

The Missourinet’s Steve Walsh reports following execution of William R. Jones  [:55 mp3] [:60 mp3] [:46 mp3]

Legal Chronology:

01/16 – William Jones murders Stanley ALbert in Jackson County, Missouri. 
11/06 – Jones goes on trial for First Degree Murder.
11/12 – A jury finds Jones guilty of Murder First Degree and recommends a sentence of death.

02/09 – Jones is sentenced to death.

02/09 – The Missouri State Supreme Court affirms Jones’ conviction and sentence.
06/30 – Jones files a post-conviction motion for relief.
10/03 – The United States Supreme Court denies Jones’ petition for writ of certiorari.

04/07 – April 7 Jones’ post-conviction motion for relief is denied by the Circuit Court.

02/13 – The Missouri State Supreme Court affirms the circuit court’s decision to deny Jones’ motion for post-conviction relief.
10/01 -The United States Supreme Court denies Jones’ petition for writ of certiorari.
10/16 -Jones files a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the United States District Court.

05/08 -The United States District court denies Jones’ petition for writ of habeas corpus.

07/31 – The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals affirms the District Court’s denial of Jones’ petition for writ of habeas corpus.

05/13 – The United States Supreme Court denies Jones’ petition of writ of certiorari.
09/25 – The Missouri State Supreme Court sets October 23, 2002 as the date of execution for William Jones.
10/04 -The Missouri State Supreme Court quashed the execution warrant set for October 23, 2002 and reset the execution date for November 20, 2002.