Mtsu Essay

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Coin Toss for Execution Have you ever heard of a coin toss for an execution? In August of 1948 in Nashville, TN, that is what happened to two men. In January of 1947 James Sandusky and John Kelly took the life of an innocent man. It all began with the two trying to hitch a ride on Hillsboro Road. According to Larry Brinton of Reporter’s Notebook, the two had already hitched a ride with one man and during the ride he became suspicious. He pulled over at a gas station and went inside until the two men got out of his car and began walking down the road. He then returned to his car and left passing the two men on the road. However, this did not hinder the men’s plan. It wasn’t long before another man, J. Edward Sprouse stopped and suggested they get in the car since he was already heading that way. Sandusky and Kelly waited about two or three miles before taking control of the car. Once they obtained control of the car the two men stopped. They took Sprouse out of the car and into the woods. Once in the woods, they took Sprouse’s belt off of him and hanged him in a tree. They took the money he had and a few other items. Sandusky, who had no conscience, shot Sprouse in the chest and didn’t even look back. Once they had killed Sprouse they took his car and headed to Florida. It wasn’t long before the men were apprehended by the police. Once they were in police custody they were sent to jail. During the trial, each of the men got on the stand and both told the gruesome details of what happened to Sprouse. Both of them were acting as if they did nothing wrong. It took the jury just a short period of time before deciding the men were guilty. They both received the death sentence. When the day came for their executions, both were scheduled for the same day. This is why they tossed a coin; they tossed the coin to see who would get executed

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