Convicted child killer Battaglia, will be killed today in Dallas, Texas by lethal injection
John David Battaglia, 62, brutally killed his two daughters, ages nine and six, as they begged for their lives 17 years ago
An abusive spouse and dad, he had a history of terrorizing his wife and children, ultimately with his estranged on the speakerphone Battaglia shot Liberty, 6, and Faith Battaglia, 9, as they cried ‘no Daddy, don’t do it’
He now faces death penalty by lethal injected for the May 2, 2001 murder of the girls
After rejected appeals, his execution will take place today
Convicted in 2002, his attorneys lost their appeal based on his being ‘delusional and mentally incompetent’ for execution
The courts found Battaglia competent, faking mental illness to try to avoid execution
A judge described him as a vengeful, manipulative, and deceitful person
Stone-cold killer: Time is up for 62-year-old John David Battaglia who executed his two daughters Faith, nine, and Liberty, six in May 2001. The girls begged for their lives ah he shot each multiple times while their mother listened helpless via phone
The clock has apparently run out for John David Battaglia who is scheduled for execution Thursday February 1, 2018. The 62-year-old brutally shot his two daughters Faith, nine, and Liberty, six in May 2001. The girls were shot multiple times while their mother listened helpless on the speakerphone.
As Battaglia pulled the trigger, the little girls could be heard crying out ‘no Daddy, don’t do it’ while their mother listened on the phone.
Battaglia and his wife had separated and the girls were killed at his Dallas apartment during a scheduled visit.
John David Battaglia, of Dallas, Texas, will be executed Thursday, by lethal injection for his crimes.
His attorneys failed in their appeal to a federal appeals court and the Supreme Court to block his execution and review his case, on the basis that he is delusional and mentally incompetent for execution.
His lawyers argued the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, the state’s highest criminal court, misapplied the Supreme Court’s guidance when it ruled Battaglia is competent for the death penalty.
A mental health expert who testified during a competency hearing in November 2016 said Battaglia was probably faking or exaggerating his delusions to save his life.
On May 2, 2001 Battaglia killed his daughters Faith, nine, and Liberty, six, in his apartment in Dallas.
This morning appeals for his mental incompetence were rejected.
Collateral of a broken relationship: Liberty [left], 6, and Faith Battaglia, 9, were executed by their father in his apt on May 2, 2001 during a weekly visit. Their parents were estranged.
On the fateful day, Battaglia picked up his daughters from his ex-wife in a shopping center parking lot for his court-ordered visit with girls.
When he brought them home he phoned his ex-wife, Mary Jean Pearle and bizarrely said ‘Merry… Christmas’.
‘Why do you want daddy to go to jail,’ one of the girls reportedly said to their mother.
Then the girls began to plead with their father saying, ‘No, no Daddy’.
The mother then heard gunshots and called 911.
Faith was shot three times and Liberty five.
He should pay for his crimes: The killer’s surviving daughter from his first marriage Christie Battaglia, holds up photos of her two half-sisters, Faith (left) and Liberty killed 17 year ago by their dad
Battaglia has been on death row since 2002. The Supreme Court has ruled prisoners can
be executed if they’re aware the death penalty is to be carried out and have a rational understanding of why they’re facing that punishment.
Battaglia’s lawyers contend he doesn’t have that understanding.
However a state judge and the state appeals court found Battaglia competent and faking mental illness to try to avoid execution. In fact, he was described as highly intelligent.
‘The defendant is a vengeful, manipulative, cunning and deceitful person with the motive and intellectual capability to maintain a deliberate ploy or ruse to avoid his execution,’ State District Judge Robert Burns.
Battaglia’s lawyers also argued to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that a federal judge improperly denied their requests for additional money to hire an expert to collect information about his competency, which has been a major focus of appeals in the case.
Battaglia told The Dallas Morning News in 2014 his daughters were his “best little friends” and that he had photos of them displayed in his prison cell.
‘I don’t feel like I killed them. I am a little bit in the blank about what happened,’ he said.
Evidence showed Battaglia was enraged by his ex-wife when she went to police to report his harassment and likely arrest.
He used the May 2, 2001, visit with their two young daughters to avenge his anger. At the time of the trial for that murder, it was revealed Battaglia was on probation for an attack on his ex-wife Pearle from Christmas 1999.
His crooked Christmas reference in the phone call during the murder, was an apparent reference to that.
Battaglia [photo], had a long history of domestic abuse and terrorizing his family before he killed Faith and Liberty. He repeatedly hit his wife, Mary Jean Pearle, on Christmas Day 1999 in front of their children.
When the marriage broke up, he would make threatening phone calls. He was also prone to verbally abusing his family.
Pearle has declined to talk about her ex-husband in recent years, but reading her victim impact statement after Battaglia was sentenced to death in 2002, she said that her daughters were hesitant about their weekly visit with their father, at the time they were killed: “Liberty hid under her bed, not wanting to go to dinner with you that Wednesday night,” Pearle said during the statement.
“But I said, ‘Oh, it will be OK.’ I trusted you with their lives.”
Battaglia also abused his first wife, Michelle Ghetti.
Years earlier Michelle was hospitalized after he beat her at a bus stop because she wanted to have him arrested for harassing her. He was given two years’ probation in 1987 after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor.
Christie Battaglia, his daughter from his first marriage, spoke in favor of capital punishment last April when Louisiana lawmakers discussed doing away with the death penalty.
“If not for the death penalty, we’d be living in fear,” Christie Battaglia said of her father.