Virginia Executes Man Who Saw Open Door, Killed Family

Ricky Gray killed couple, 2 daughters who were prepping for New Year's party
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 19, 2017 1:55 AM CST
Virginia Executes Man for Murder of Family of 4
Death penalty opponents hold a candlelight vigil outside the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt, Va., on Wednesday.   (Steve Helber)

A man convicted of killing a family of four, slashing their throats, and setting their home ablaze after they left their front door open while preparing for a New Year's Day party in 2006, was executed Wednesday. Ricky Gray was pronounced dead at 9:42pm following a lethal injection at the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt, Va., the AP reports. The 39-year-old inmate showed no emotion as he was walked into the execution chamber wearing blue jeans and handcuffs. Asked if he had any final words, Gray responded, "Nope." Gray was condemned to death in 2006 for the murders of 9-year-old Stella Harvey and 4-year-old sister Ruby, and sentenced to life in prison for the slaying of their parents, Bryan and Kathryn Harvey. Bryan Harvey was a guitarist and singer for the rock duo House of Freaks.

The family was getting ready to host friends for a chili dinner and Gray and his nephew, Ray Dandridge, were looking for a home to rob when they spotted the open door. Court records show they tied up the family in the basement and Gray slashed their throats and bashed their heads with a hammer before setting their home on fire and fleeing with a computer, a wedding ring, and a basket of cookies. Gray also confessed to participating in the slaying of 21-year-old Ashley Baskerville, her mother Mary Baskerville-Tucker, and stepfather Percyell Tucker days after the Harvey deaths, but he wasn't tried in that case. Gray was the first Virginia inmate executed since convicted serial killer Alfredo Prieto received a lethal injection in October 2015. Just six inmates remain on Virginia's death row. (More execution stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.