The moral stakes of picking a side here shouldn’t be complicated.
Thursday, Feb. 23, has been a long time coming for Laura Vann and her family. It’s the day she’ll finally get justice for her mother Faye Vann. The day that her mother’s killer, Donald Dillbeck will be executed. Vann reflected on the type of person her mother was.
“She was just a very sweet loving lady, she would do anything for anyone, she loved children, she loved her grandbabies, she loved me and she loved my brothers,” said Vann.
Donald Dillbeck was already serving a life sentence for the death of Lee County Deputy Dwight Lynn Hall back in 1979. He escaped custody two days before murdering Faye Vann in 1990 after he attempted to car jack her.
She was waiting alone in the Tallahassee Mall parking lot. Laura says she was supposed to be with her mom that day, which is something that she’s struggled with over the years.
“I’ve always wondered if I did go would have it happened to me too,” Vann said. “Or would he not have even bothered her.”
Here’s what actually happened.
Dillbeck was 11 years into a life sentence for killing the deputy when he walked away from a work release assignment catering a meal for a seniors event, according to court records. He then bought a paring knife and walked to Tallahassee.
Vann was waiting for her family when Dillbeck approached her car with the knife and demanded a ride, saying he’d forgotten how to drive, court records show.
Vann honked the horn, tried to drive off and fought back that Sunday afternoon, but Dillbeck stabbed her more than 20 times and slit her throat, court records show. He crashed the car a short time later and was captured after running from the scene.
Florida’s Supreme Court earlier this month denied appeals claiming he shouldn’t be put to death because he suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome and it was cruel and unusual to keep him on death row for more than 30 years before his death warrant was signed.
The cruelty lay in waiting 30 years to give the families of his victims closure.
Donald Dillbeck, 59, was pronounced dead at 6:13 p.m. after receiving a lethal injection at Florida State Prison, the governor’s office said. He had been convicted in the murder of Faye Vann, 44, in Tallahassee near the state Capitol.
Vann’s children, Tony and Laura, released a statement after the execution: “11,932 days ago, Donald Dillbeck brutally killed our Mother. We were robbed of years of memories with her, and it has been very painful ever since.”
They thanked DeSantis for carrying out the execution, saying it “has given us some closure.”
That was right on cue for the national media to fall in love with Dillbeck.
Florida Executes Man Used As ‘Political Pawn’ By Ron DeSantis – “I know I hurt people when I was young. I really messed up,” said Donald Dillbeck, who was sentenced to death by a non-unanimous jury. “But I know Ron DeSantis has done a lot worse.” – Huffington Post
Death Row Inmate Uses Last Words to Diss DeSantis: ‘Suck Our D*cks’ – Daily Beast
Strapped to a gurney, death row inmate Donald Dillbeck saves his last words for DeSantis – Tallahassee Democrat
Whatever anyone feels about DeSantis or any politician, Democrat or Republican, maybe making a monster who slashed a woman’s throat into your hero is the wrong way to go?
How fundamentally evil do you have to be to be willing to side with absolutely anyone who’s against someone you oppose?
“As the clerk read the sentence aloud, one juror wept uncontrollably,” the Tallahassee Democrat reported, referencing the newspaper’s archives. “Readers wrote to the newspaper disturbed by how such an arbitrary split could still send someone to death row, or by how Dillbeck’s history of childhood trauma seemed to have granted him some, but not enough, mercy.”
You are what you empathize with. When you empathize with evil, you’re evil.