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Men Executed in Virginia, Indiana, Nebraska; Another Set In South Carolina

July 19, 1996

A man who killed a police sergeant in Indiana was executed early Thursday, hours after a man who killed his male lover was executed in Virginia and a former Boy Scout leader who murdered two boys was executed in Nebraska.

The recent string of killers facing the ultimate punishment was set to continue early Friday when South Carolina planned to execute a man by injection for killing his ex-wife, her father and her stepson.

In 1985, Fred Kornahrens shot his ex-wife, and when she ran to her father’s mobile home next door, Kornahrens fatally stabbed him, then chased his ex-wife back outside and stabbed her to death. Her stepson, also stabbed to death, was found with his hands and feet bound with packing tape.

On Thursday, it took technicians 35 minutes to find a vein for the lethal injection of Tommie Smith in Indiana; they finally used a vein in his foot. Smith insisted to the end that he didn’t fire the shots that killed Indianapolis police Sgt. Jack Ohrberg.

Ohrberg had gone to Smith’s house in 1980 to serve an arrest warrant for another man. That man, Gregory Resnover, was executed in 1994 for his role in Ohrberg’s killing.

Smith, 42, who had burglary and robbery convictions in the 1970s, said he shot at the officer, mistakenly believing that Ohrberg was an intruder.

In Virginia, Joseph John Savino III was executed by injection late Wednesday after saying ``I’m sorry for what happened to Tommy McWaters.″

Savino, 37, pleaded guilty to bludgeoning Thos McWaters to death at their Bedford County home in 1988. Later, he claimed police badgered him into confessing even though he repeatedly asked for a lawyer.

Also Wednesday, John Joubert, a former Boy Scout leader who murdered two boys in 1983, was executed in Nebraska’s electric chair.

Joubert, 33, repeatedly stabbed and slashed Danny Jo Eberle, 13, and Christopher Walden, 12, near Offut Air Force Base, where he was stationed. He also was convicted of stabbing and strangling a boy in Maine.

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