Former long-haul trucker Alfred Bourgeois, 56, of Louisiana, is set to be executed sometime Friday, barring a last-minute court stay, at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana.
He has spent the past 17 years on death row after a Texas jury found him guilty and sentenced him to death in March 2004 for the brutal murder of his 2-year-old daughter, JG.
Bourgeois will be the second of five executions planned before President Donald Trump leaves office amid a renewed call to abolish the death penalty.
On Thursday, Brandon Bernard, 40, died by lethal injection after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a last-minute bid by his attorneys for clemency. Celebrities and advocates sought unsuccessfully to block Bernard’s execution, and foes of the death penalty are expected to gain an ally in the incoming Biden administration.
It took a Texas jury less than two hours to find Bourgeois guilty of capital murder on March 16, 2004.
According to the Department of Justice, Bourgeois “became enraged and repeatedly slammed the back of her [JG’s] head into the truck’s window and dashboard, killing her” after she tipped over her potty chair in the cab of his tractor-trailer on June 28, 2002. He was backing into a loading door at a naval base in Corpus Christi, Texas, at the time. He faces federal execution because the crime occured on the base.
Bourgeois found out a few weeks prior to JG’s death that a paternity test had identified him as her father, the DOJ stated in the release. He was ordered to pay child support to JG’s mother.
Soon after, Bourgeois was granted temporary custody of JG to take her over the road with him and his wife. A few weeks later she was dead.
The DOJ said that while on the trip, “Bourgeois systematically abused and tortured her — including by punching her in the face, whipping her with an electrical cord, and burning the bottom of her foot with a cigarette lighter.”
His legal team contends that Bourgeois is intellectually disabled, but his trial lawyers failed to present the evidence during his trial.
Bourgeois was scheduled to be executed on Jan. 13, 2020, “but legal impediments prevented the government from proceeding at that time,” the DOJ said.
If all of the executions take place, Trump will have overseen the federal executions of 13 people since July, the most by a U.S. president in more than a century.