Local News

8 men in limbo on Washington's death row

SPOKANE, Wash. - Sunday, a man sentenced to death for crimes committed in Washington suffered cardiac arrest. That leaves just eight men on Washington's death row, their fate still very uncertain.

Dwayne Woods died Sunday at Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland. Convicted of killing two women in Spokane in 1996, Woods had been awaiting execution at the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla. He suffered from a chronic medical condition and died while being treated in the hospital.

Woods murdered 22-year old Telisha Shaver and 18-year old Jade Moore. His execution date was set for 2009, but was issued a stay of execution a month before that date and has been waiting on death row ever since. Shaver's mother told KXLY in 2014 justice would not be served until her daughter's killer was dead.

In 2014, Washington Governor Jay Inslee put in place a moratorium on executions. He said he doesn't believe the penalty acts as a deterrent and can't prove the punishment is handed out equally. That means the eight men left on death row are more likely to die of natural causes than to be executed by the state, at least as long as Inslee is governor.

Washington's last execution was in 2010.

Here are the eight men still left on Washington's death row:

Robert Yates:
The so-called Spokane Serial Killer, Yates killed 13 women in Spokane between 1996 and 1998. He also admitted killing a man and woman in Walla Walla in 1975 and a woman in Skagit County in 1988. He's serving life in prison for those crimes and was sentenced to death for killing two women in Pierce County.

Dayva Cross:
Cross stabbed his wife and two step-daughters to death in King County in 1999.

Cecil Davis:
Davis was convicted of one count of aggravated first degree murder. He's accused of burglarizing a woman's home, robbing, raping and killing her. He was convicted in 1998 in Pierce County.

Clark Elmore:
Elmore killed the 14-year old daughter of his live-in girlfriend in Whatcom County in 1995. His execution date was set for January 19th, but Governor Inslee intervened late last month and granted a reprieve.

Jonathan Gentry:
Gentry is Washington's longest-serving death row inmate. He was sentenced to death row in 1991 for the murder of a 12-year old girl in Bremerton.

Allen Gregory:
Gregory was convicted of raping and killing his neighbor in Pierce County in 1996. He had a history of molesting the child and after she was dead, he dumped her body in the woods.

Byron Scherf:
Scherf was already serving prison time for raping a Spokane real estate agent when he killed Dept. of Corrections officer Jayme Biendl inside the state prison in Monroe.

Conner Schierman:
Schierman said he was in an "alcohol blackout" when he killed two women and two children in what one King County prosecutor called "the worst crimes in the history of the county" at the time. He was sentenced to death in 2010.