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Ernest West Basden

Executed December 6, 2002 by Lethal Injection in North Carolina

63rd murderer executed in U.S. in 2002
812th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
1st murderer executed in North Carolina in 2002
22nd murderer executed in North Carolina since 1976

The victim was killed on January 20th 1992

Basden shot Billy White twice in a murder-for-hire scheme devised by co-conspirators James Lynwood Taylor, his nephew, and Sylvia Ipock White, the victim's wife. Taylor pretended to be a wealthy businessman wanting to buy insurance and lured White to a wooded rural area. Taylor and Basden drove to the designated spot and waited. When White arrived, Taylor got out of his car and introduced himself, then Basden got out of the car and picked up a twelve-gauge shotgun he had placed on the ground. Basden pointed the gun at Billy and pulled the trigger. The shotgun did not fire because Basden had not cocked the hammer back. Basden then cocked the hammer and fired. Billy was knocked to the ground. Basden removed the spent shell casing and loaded another shell into the shotgun. Basden then approached Billy, who was lying face up on the ground, and while standing over him, shot him again. As agreed, Taylor gave his cash-strapped uncle $300 for the killing. Both Taylor and Basden later confessed to their roles in the killing. Mrs. White is currently serving two consecutive life sentences. Taylor is serving a life sentence.


Final Meal:
Basden did not request anything special for his last meal Thursday night, choosing instead to eat what all others at Central Prison ate. The menu included breaded veal, brown gravy, mashed potatoes, three-bean salad, mixed vegetables, slices of loaf bread, an orange and fruit punch.

Final Words:
"I killed Billy White. I'm sorry for it. And I pray that his family will come to forgive me and let time heal their wounds. And that's all we can do."


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