Amy Bishop shot up a room of university colleagues because some of them voted against granting her tenure, prosecutors argued Monday, yet two years later the families of those same victims at the University of Alabama in Huntsville may have saved her life.
Bishop was allowed to enter a guilty plea on Sept. 11 to capital murder and avoid the death penalty after Madison County District Attorney Rob Broussard learned some of the victims' families strongly opposed capital punishment.
Broussard was asked following the trial why he didn't seek the death penalty anyway, given the severity of the crime.
"I think that would probably be the ultimate arrogance on my part," Broussard said. "But in deciding whether to seek the death penalty, there are lots of facets involved in that decision. Partly the defendant themselves and the severity of the crime. On those two fronts, the death penalty is certainly warranted in this case.
"But if you look at the folks who had the most at stake, who have lost the most, and victims' families, for me to disregard those feelings and forge ahead, I would be ashamed."