Carlton Gary was convicted of killing three elderly women in Columbus, Ga. by strangling them with stockings. Photo:
Photo: Georgia Department of Corrections
Photo: Georgia Department of Corrections

‘Stocking Strangler’ Carlton Gary executed for 1970s’ rapes, murders

Gary’s initial appointed hour for the lethal injection, 7 p.m., came and went while the appeals process played out. As he waited, he declined to eat his final meal.

Thursday began with the courts weighing his final appeals. The Georgia Supreme Court was the first to deny a stay of execution, followed by a no from the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and a final no from the U.S. Supreme Court.

Gary also filed a surprise legal appeal Thursday morning in U.S. District Court in Columbus, saying he wanted a new lawyer. Gary said his attorney, Jack Martin, has cancer, so he questioned whether Martin could adequately represent him.

Atlanta lawyer Jack Martin is representing Carlton Gary (BILL RANKIN/ The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Martin told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution he was unaware of the Thursday morning filing.

The State Board of Pardons and Paroles rejected Gary’s plea for clemency on Wednesday.

Gary was convicted of raping and strangling three elderly women with their own stockings in the late 1970s.