Accessibility links

Washington Area Sniper Executed

<!-- IMAGE -->

The mastermind behind a string of deadly sniper shootings that terrorized the Washington area seven years ago has been executed.

A prison spokesman in Virginia says John Allen Muhammad was put to death by lethal injection Tuesday night. The spokesman said Muhammad was calm and showed no emotion. He did not make a final statement.

Several family members of victims, as well as Muhammad's own family and lawyers, attended the execution.

Virginia Governor Timothy Kaine cleared the way for his execution after denying clemency earlier in the day. Muhammad's lawyers had asked the governor to commute the sentence to life in prison, saying their client is mentally ill.

The U.S Supreme Court rejected Muhammad's final appeal on Monday.

Muhammad and his accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, killed 10 people during a three-week shooting rampage across Virginia, Washington and nearby Maryland in 2002.

The shootings gripped the U.S. capital area with fear, as victims were gunned down at random while doing everyday chores like shopping or pumping gas.

Malvo was 17-years-old at the time of the shootings. He has been sentenced to life in prison without parole in Virginia. The two men also are suspected in several murders in Alabama, Arizona and Louisiana.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.