Former death row inmate, Paula Cooper, commits suicide

Paula Cooper, 45, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. She was found dead in Indianapolis, Indiana. When she was 16, Cooper was sentenced to death for the murder of Ruth Pelke, 78. A Bible studies teacher from Gary, Indiana, Pelke was robbed and stabbed 33 times with a 12-inch butcher knife. When the crime was committed, […]

Black woman sentenced to death at age 16 is set free

In 1986, Paula Cooper was 16 years old when she was sentenced to death for stabbing Ruth Pelke, a 78-year-old Bible school teacher, to death. When she committed the murder, stabbing Pelke with a butcher knife 33 times, she was only 15. Cooper and her three accomplices stole Pelke’s car and $10. Cooper confessed to the murder […]