California · Executions · Female Killers

Woman executed for killing the woman who helped free her from a previous murder sentence

April 11, 1947
San Quentin, California
American murderer Louise Peete is executed in the gas chamber at the age of 66

Peete (seen here in her mugshot the day before her execution) had previously served time for the murder of a wealthy man whom she claimed to be romantic with, but had been sent out on parole after several people lobbied for her release. One of the women who had spoken on her behalf then employed Peete to give her a new life, and was repaid by being murdered and burglarized.

Additionally, Peete had been married four times, and all four husbands killed themselves: the first when he found his wife in bed with another man; the second after being accused of a theft Peete had been responsible for as well as Peete’s unfaithfulness; the third after Peete convinced him to divorce her while she was in jail; and the last after being questioned about an accessory to a murder with Peete.

Peete became the second of 4 women to have been executed in California’s gas chamber; the other women executed in the gas chamber were Juanita Spinelli in 1941, Barbara Graham in 1955, and Elizabeth Duncan in 1962.

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