29 April 2003 – David M Brewer

It’s one thing to covet your mate’s wife, but it’s entirely different to abduct her, rape her and kill her in cold blood.

That’s what David Brewer was found guilty of and executed for in 2003.

Tall story

It started when two frat brothers from Ohio were good friends. When they got married they socialised as a foursome. Joe Byrne and his wife Sherry were close to Brewer and his wife Karen so when Brewer called to ask her to meet them to celebrate his wife’s pregnancy (although other reports talk of buying speakers), Sherry was only too pleased to join in.

Except Karen wasn’t pregnant and there was no celebration – there probably wasn’t any speakers either. Instead Brewer forced her into sex in a motel room and beat her up, before stashing her away in the boot of his car.

Noteworthy ingenuity

He then drove around with her all over the place, stopping off here and there to beat her up. Ingeniously she managed to write a note in lipstick on a piece of paper and poke it out of the boot. The ploy worked – someone picked it up and reported it and the number plate to the police.

The car was traced and they tried to contact Brewer at work. So when he turned up there, he realised he’d have to go to the police station.

But he couldn’t with Sherry in the boot. So he then took her to a remote spot and frenziedly stabbed her 15 times, slit her throat and even hanged her using his necktie. He then dumped her body before making his way calm as you like to police station.

He passed the note off with some convincing yarn about a wind-up carried out by a hitcher he’d picked up. The police believed him and he slipped out from under them. He then collect Sherry’s body and holed her up in a locker before going round to look after her husband.

The police caught up with him soon after and this time he told a lie too far. Finally he broke and confessed that he’d lost control and killed her – that formed the basis of his defence; that he was insane.

Brewer droops

Of course the defence didn’t wash and he was injected with a lethal dose of toxins on this day in 2003, but not before poignantly speaking out against the death penalty. ‘…as far as death row inmates are concerned, there are some that are innocent. I’m not one of them. But there are plenty that are….’

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