Justin Thurber – White, age 23

Sentenced in Cowley County, Kansas
By: a jury
Date of crime: January 5, 2007
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Thurber kidnapped, raped, and murdered Jodi Sanderholm (age 19). The State argued that the mental and physical torture of Sanderholm, as well as the manner in which her body was hidden, pointed to an indifference to human life and warranted the death penalty. Defense attempted to show that Justin Thurber was mentally retarded, but his IQ was 10 points higher than the minimum set by the state. The defense introduced evidence of Thurber’s bipolar disorder.
Sources: Wichita Eagle (KS) 02/16/09 (2009 WLNR 3023246), 02/17/09 (2009 WLNR 3047277); AP Alert 02/16/09 – KS 18:22:45, 03/20/09 – KS 21:18:28; Kansas City Star (MO) 03/21/09 (2009 WLNR 5345375)