Alabama prisoner Nathaniel Woods dies by execution

An Alabama man was executed Thursday evening after the Supreme Court issued a temporary stay on his death penalty punishment, only to lift it soon after. 

Nathaniel Woods, 44, was pronounced dead at 9:01 p.m, according to the Montegomery Advisor. He had no final words. 

Woods, who was convicted as an alleged accomplice in a 2004 killing of three police officers, had been set to die by lethal injection at the William C. Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore, Ala., according to court documents.  


Earlier in the day, Justice Clarence ThomasClarence ThomasHow religious liberty was distorted in the age of COVID-19 Supreme Court wrestles with limits on digital billboard ads, free speech Winsome Sears: The latest Black conservative to make liberals nervous MORE signed an initial temporary stay order to halt Woods's execution, stating that the status of his punishment would not move forward “pending further order of the undersigned or of the Court.”

However, less than four hours later, the Supreme Court denied to review Woods’s case and lifted the stay. 

His death came after a storm of legal appeals and protests, including family members of the deceased officers. They argued that Woods, who did not actually kill the officers, and according to the trigger man had no part in the crime, is innocent. 

Alabama Sen. Doug Jones (D) sent a letter to Gov. Kay Ivey, saying that because of the discrepancies in the case, “a delay is warranted.”


The debate over Woods extended reached the Alabama state house Thursday morning as well. According to the Advisor, state Rep. Thomas Jackson (D) told the body that "the man who’s been in prison all these years didn’t do anything to cause him to be on death row."


However, these arguments did not seem to sway Ivey. 

In a statement to the news source, Ivey said: “After thorough and careful consideration of the facts surrounding the case, the initial jury’s decision, the many legal challenges and reviews, I concluded that the state of Alabama should carry out Mr. Woods’ lawfully imposed sentence this evening.”

Martin Luther King III, the son of the civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., was one of many calling Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) to halt the execution.

On Thursday, he praised the move by Justice Thomas on Twitter for postponing Woods's execution. However, King asked the governor to reconsider after the stay was lifted. 

"We have moments left before he is executed," King tweeted.

On Monday, King sent a letter to Ivey urging her to consider halting the execution of "a man who is very likely innocent." By the time he was set to die, nearly a 100,000 people signed on to a petition on to stop Woods's execution.

The case even garnered attention from the likes of Kim Kardashian, who asked her Twitter followers to ask the governor to halt his execution. She later mourned his death.

“Nate will die for a crime another man confessed to and says Nate had nothing to do with,” she tweeted. “My heart and prayers are with Nate and his family and all the advocates who worked tirelessly to save his life.”

Updated March 5, 11:12 p.m.