Frederick Baer – white, age 32
Sentenced to death in Madison County, Indiana
By: A jury
Date of crime: 2/25/2004
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Baer entered a rural house where he found Cory Clark and her 4-year-old daughter, Jenna Clark. Baer sexually assaulted Cory Clark and then cut her throat. He then cut Jenna Clark’s throat and robbed the house. Baer pled guilty-but-mentally-ill and presented psychiatric testimony that he suffered from mental illness. The prosecution presented evidence that Baer did not suffer from a mental illness, which included a taped telephone conservation where he talked about lying to doctors to appear mentally ill. The jury found him guilty.
Prosecutor(s): Rodney Cummings
Defense lawyer(s): Bryan Williams, Jeffrey Lockwood
Sources: The Indianapolis Star 5/4/2005 (2005 WLNR 7048694), 5/13/2005 (2005 WLNR 7632636); AP Alert – Indiana 5/21/2005 (5/21/2005 APALERTIN 01:47:19).
Wayne Kubsch – white, age 30 (re-sentence after appellate reversal)
Sentenced to death in St. Joseph County, Indiana
By: A jury
Date of crime: 9/18/1998
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Wayne Kubsch was in financial trouble and killed his wife, Beth Kubsch, for a $575,000 life insurance policy he took out on her three months before. Wayne Kubsch tied up his wife with duct tape, stabbed her 11 times, and put her body under the stairs. During the murder, Beth Kubsch’s ex-husband and 10-year-old son came to the house unexpectedly. Wayne Kubsch shot and stabbed Rick Milewski and Aaron Milewski. The defense contested guilt by arguing that there was no physical evidence that tied Wayne Kubsch to the murders. During the penalty phase, Kubsch represented himself and did not present any mitigating factors because he said he did not want to have his family testify again.
Prosecutor(s): Scott Duerring, Frank Schaffer
Defense lawyer(s): Philip Skodinski, Brian May at guilt/innocence phase; Defendant represented himself during the penalty phase
Sources: South Bend Tribune (Indiana) 3/20/2005, 3/22/2005, 4/17/2005, 4/19/2005 (LEXIS USPAPR file).