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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

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11/16/2012 12:01:00 AM
State presses for execution of murderer who dumped body near Prescott in 1978
Edward Harold Schad, who killed a man and dumped the body near Prescott in 1978, has been on death row since 1980.
Edward Harold Schad, who killed a man and dumped the body near Prescott in 1978, has been on death row since 1980.
Scott Orr
The Daily Courier

PHOENIX - The Arizona Attorney General's Office will put an end to a 34-year-old murder case if the state Supreme Court grants its request to set an execution date for Edward Harold Schad, who killed a man and dumped the body near Prescott.

"He has completed his all of his state and federal appeals," Assistant Arizona Attorney General Kent Cattani, "so, at this point, our expectation would be that the execution would go forward sometime in February."

Schad was sentenced to death in January 1980, making his term the second-longest of the 125 inmates currently on Arizona's death row. Five have been executed this year, with a sixth, Richard Stokley, set for Dec. 6.

"This is an extraordinarily long time," Cattani said. "Most of them probably don't go over 20 years, which is obviously still a long time."

Schad, now 70, was twice convicted of the murder of Bisbee resident Lorimar Leroy Grove, 74, in 1978 and then dumping the body near Highway 89 south of Prescott. The medical examiner said the cause of death was strangulation, and a cord was found still knotted around Grove's neck when his body was discovered on Aug. 9, 1978.

The case had what the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals called "strong circumstantial evidence pointing to (Schad's) guilt and no one else."

Grove was last seen alive when he left Bisbee on Aug. 1, 1978, in a new Cadillac pulling a trailer. He was reportedly headed to Everett, Wash., to visit his sister, and may have been carrying up to $30,000 in cash.

Two days later, a DPS officer came upon a Ford Fairmont abandoned on Highway 89, about 135 miles north of where Grove's body would be found six days later. A records check showed that Schad had rented the car from a dealership in Utah but had never returned it.

In the car, DPS found a custom device created by Grove to help him couple his trailer to the car.

On Aug. 2, Schad began driving East, leaving a paper trail as he used Grove's credit cards and checks.

He was stopped for speeding by a New York State Trooper on Sept. 3 and told the trooper he was delivering the car to Grove, but couldn't supply the car's registration. He gave the trooper the trailer's registration, and the officer cited him and sent him on his way.

Schad then drove back to Utah to see his girlfriend. Her roommate called police to report that Schad confessed the Cadillac was stolen, and he was arrested in Salt Lake City on Sept. 8, 1978.

Schad also had a prior conviction for second-degree murder in Utah from 1968 for which he'd served time.

In October 1979, a Prescott jury found Schad guilty of the first-degree murder of Grove and he was sentenced to death based on the aggravating factors of pecuniary gain and the prior felony. He petitioned for a retrial on the grounds that the judge had improperly instructed the jury on the felony murder rule, and the first verdict was thrown out.

He was found guilty a second time in 1985, and again sentenced to death.

Schad's case went to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1991, which affirmed the conviction.

He petitioned the U.S. district court again on different grounds in 1998, and was turned down.

Schad challenged the verdict with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2009 and that court rejected his claim.

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected his request for review, setting the scene for the state Attorney General to ask for an execution date.




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Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, November 17, 2012
Article comment by: Once Should Have Been Enough

@Hooty Hoo-can't understand your reasoning. I suppose this also goes for the "Manson clan", since they too, served alot of time in prison? If he was kept in prison the first time, someone would still be alive. Not everyone finds the Lord in prison but it seems he spends alot of time there.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: To little to late

Should have been promptly executed after the first murder and the 2nd victim would not have been killed.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Not a Hypocrite Just a Good Christian That Likes to Save Tax $$$

So if you raging, blood thirsty Old Testament Christians are not into the "Thou Shalt Not Kill" commandment sent down by God Himself... smoke this…
Maricopa county now pays $8.5 million to defend capital cases on an average.  If the state were to drop the death penalty and just incarcerate these folks for life at a yearly cost of $47,000 per year that would amount to about one hundred and eighty one years in jail at that rate. Most folks do not live that long… there may be a big saving here! Plus if there was a leetle mistake in the trial, which of there have been many, the sentence is not irreversible!


Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Hooty Hoo

You can't make this stuff up. I say he's done enought time and let him go. He's had time to find the Lord, I'm sure he's sorry.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Wars Also Kill

@Thou Shalt Not Kill-funny how when we quote the Bible we always justify wars. Ever have a family member or friend killed for no reason or a child? Don t be a hypocrite. An eye for an eye is more like it.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: After All These Years

Why do the laws wait so long to execute someone if it's a clear cut case? He's 70 yrs. old and has lived his younger life with 3 meals a day and roof over his head, all at taxpay'ers expense. We need to reform our laws because most don't make sense and it only cost more money to house these criminals.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: things that make ya go... hmmmmm.........

Whats the point of sentencing them to "death" when they sit in prison for 30 PLUS years? 10 yrs MAX, if they DONT prove their innocence by then, well, off ya go to "do your time" wherever that may be..... Im sure if your on death row, chances are- you wont be doing time in Heaven.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: sour grapes

this guy has been eating, sleeping, pooping, and whatever else on our dime for all these years, when he should just be 6 ft under instead-- long ago i might add. Cali just had a measure on the ballot to get rid of the death penalty all together so we can just feed and house these guys until they die...yup on our dime..Sigh... Anyone know if it passed over there in looney ville?

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Mr Protected

What I don't understand is why it takes 20 -35 years to put thugs to death!
Lets git those appeals done in 6 months,and give them the needle!


Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Alan Whitney

I support capital punishment. But after 34 years, it sort of looses it's point, don't you think?

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: David Lundy

Cases like this that drag on for so long, even 20 years, are reason enough to do away with the death penalty. I'm all for execution, but at this late date it really bears no connection to the crime. 30 years of appeals have probably cost the state and Yavapai County upwards of a million dollars. Just sentence them to life without parole and be done with the appeals in two years and that's that. This business of 20 or 30 years of appeals is just insane. If the death penalty could be carried out in five years or less, keep it, but it obviously cannot be, due to the unwillingness of anybody in the entire appellate system to have the guts to carry it out.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Thou Shalt Not Kill

Sure let's kill the killer!

That places society at the same level as the killer

A 8 x11 cell for life solves the problem.



Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Tom Steele

More evidence our judicial system benefits those in the legal community more than justice. And for anyone to be on death row for 32 years? I would like to know the costs to defend this man's appeals over those 32 years. I'll bet it would have been cheaper to convict on a life sentence without the benefit of parole. Further example of a costly money treadmill for the legal profession in the name of justice.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Joe Peep

He killed someone 10 years earlier and served time? At the most it was 10 years! Why such a light sentence? THAT is the reason he killed again. He should have executed years ago.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: @ impeachment kindom come

Look out! It's a distraction. Probably, the vote count. Delay until the Safe Harbor date.

More to the point, I don't want the State to murder in the name of justice. Hope the Governor does not sign the order.



Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: denise m.

Why do murderers get a second chance to murder? I dont get it.



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