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King family fighting parole

By By MICHELE GERLACH
Publisher
The family of Stephanie Marie King is circulating petitions and seeking letters or emails from area residents who will help them keep her murderer behind bars.
Miss King was 16-year-old T.R. Miller High School senior when she was abducted from Alco Baptist Church 16 years ago this week, on Oct. 22, 1988. She was raped, sodomized and strangled to death. Her body was later found inside her car, which was in a wooded area about four miles from the church.
Despite being sentenced to life in prison, Edward Russell Dubose, who confessed to the murder, is scheduled for a parole hearing on Nov. 1 in Montgomery. The hearing will fall one day after Miss King's birthday.
"She would be 33 years old," her mother, Sallie King, said. "She was a mess."
Mrs. King said her daughter surprised her when she was born about five weeks before she was expected, "and she was a surprise every day after that."
Stephanie King was head of the flute section in the high school band and served as the organist at Alco Baptist Church, where she also cleaned on Saturdays to earn money for college. She was working at the church on Saturday, Oct. 22, 1988, when she was abducted.
Mrs. King is circulating petitions opposing parole for Dubose and encouraging people to email Alabama's Board of Pardon and Paroles with protests. She plans to collect the petitions today, Sunday, Oct. 17, at her church, Catawba Springs Baptist, because there are deadlines for submitting the materials. However, emails and letters may continue until later this month.
"I don't feel he has served enough time," Mrs. King said. "I don't have any indication that he has any remorse for what he did. If there is remorse, there definitely is the opportunity to convey that to the family."
She said she is not fearful for her herself if he is released, but feels the community will be less safe.
"As parents, we have to fight for our children," she said. "If Stephanie were here, she would do this for me."
Anyone who would like to support the family's effort may contact Mrs. King by email at smkking@yahoo.com. She will provide all of the specific information that must be included in letters or email to be considered by the Board of Pardons and Parole.
Dubose was a 29-year-old Brewton resident who lived in the Pea Ridge community when he was arrested and charged with the murder in late December of 1988.
He was convicted of murder and sentenced to the death penalty in 1989. However, his conviction was overturned in 1995 by an appellate court which ruled that a request for funds to hire an independent DNA expert for the defense should have been granted.
On Sept. 8, 1997, Dubose plead guilty to murder in Escambia County Circuit Court and was sentenced to life in prison.