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North Carolina
Michael F. Easley, Governor           Theodis Beck, Secretary

For Immediate Release
September 7, 2001
Contact: Keith Acree
             (919) 716-3727


RALEIGH – Correction Secretary Theodis Beck has set Oct.12 as the execution date for death row inmate David Junior Ward (#0423876). The execution is scheduled for 2 a.m. at Central Prison.

An execution date for Ward was originally set for June 25, 1999, but a stay of execution was granted by the North Carolina Supreme Court on June 9, 1999. That stay was lifted Aug. 16, 2001.

Ward, 40, was sentenced to death April 14, 1992 in Pitt County Superior Court for the April 3, 1991 murder of Dorothy Mae Smith.

A media tour at Central Prison is scheduled for Monday, October 8 at 10 a.m. This will be the only time the news media will be allowed to photograph the execution chamber and death watch area before the execution. Interested reporters and photographers should be at Central Prison’s visitor center promptly at 10 a.m. During the tour, Warden R.C. Lee will explain execution procedures. The session will last approximately one hour.

Reporters who plan to attend the media tour should call the Department of Correction Public Information Office at number above.

ATTENTION EDITORS: A photo of Ward can be obtained by using the "Offender Search" function on the Department of Correction web site at For more information about the death penalty, including selection of witnesses, click on "The Death Penalty" link.

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