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November 20, 2013 2:50 pm

Joseph Paul Franklin, White Supremacist, Put to Death Over Synagogue Shooting

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Joseph Paul Franklin is seen in a booking photo. Photo: Missouri Department of Corrections. White supremacist Joseph Paul Franklin, who went on a nationwide killing spree in the late 1970s that targeted blacks and Jews, was put to death on Wednesday in Missouri.

Franklin, 63, was executed for the October 1977 sniper-style shooting of Gerald Gordon outside Brith Sholom Kneseth Israel Synagogue in suburban St. Louis as Gordon was leaving a bar mitzvah service.

Overall, Gordon was convicted of seven murders and claimed credit for 20 deaths, the Associated Press reported. He also bombed a Tennessee synagogue in July 1977. The execution was put forward after Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon rejected Franklin’s plea for clemency, saying in a statement that Franklin had committed “merciless acts of violence, fueled by hate.”

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