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Missouri Executes Killer of Family Nearly Two Decades Ago

Leonard Taylor, who was convicted of killing his girlfriend and her three children at their home in the St. Louis suburb of Jennings nearly two decades ago, was executed by Missouri on Tuesday. “Muslims don’t die. We live eternally in the hearts of our family and friends,” Taylor wrote in his final statement following a verse from the Quran. “From Allah we come, and to Allah we all shall return. Everybody will get their turn to die.” Taylor, 58, was the third person to be executed in Missouri in three months. His death marked only the second time since 2015 that more than one person was executed in a calendar year, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He was convicted in 2008 of killing 28-year-old Angela Rowe and her three children, Alexus Conley, 10, AcQreya Conley, 6, and Tyrese Conley, 5, at their home. He has insisted he is innocent of the killings.

Rowe’s older sister, Gerjuan Rowe, attended the execution along with eight other loved ones. “Justice was served,” Rowe said. “Now, I get a little peace.” Rowe and her children were found Dec. 3, 2004. Rowe was covered by blankets and shot four times, once fatally in the head. The children were also shot and lined up on a bed. Prosecutors said they believed the family was shot on the night of Nov. 23 or early morning of Nov. 24. Taylor had called his brother just before midnight, then again at 12:05 a.m. Nov. 24, and admitted to the killings. The brother told police Taylor stayed in the house with the bodies because he was waiting for a letter from his wife in California. On Nov. 26, Taylor’s sister-in-law drove him to the airport. She testified at trial she saw him drop a long-barreled revolver into a sewer before he left. Taylor was arrested Dec. 9 in Kentucky in possession of fake IDs and pamphlets about creating a false identity. Police later tested the sunglasses he wore that day and found blood that matched Rowe’s DNA.


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