Man Gets Life in Prison for Killing Pregnant Girlfriend and Her Baby November 12, 2002
Man Gets Life in Prison for Killing Pregnant Girlfriend and Her Baby Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch; November 9, 2002 St. Louis, MO -- Willis Bailey Jr. will spend the rest of his life behind bars for the murder last year of his girlfriend and the resulting death of their unborn child at an apartment in Ferguson, Missouri. Before a courtroom in Clayton filled with friends and relatives of the victim, Bailey pleaded guilty of two counts each of first-degree murder and armed criminal action. St. Louis County Circuit Judge Gary M. Gaertner Jr. sentenced Bailey to life in prison without parole. In exchange for the guilty pleas, prosecutor J.D. Evans agreed to drop the state's pursuit of the death penalty in the case in which the victim, Virginia Banks, was tied up and stabbed to death in front of her 5-year-old daughter, who was unharmed. Banks, 31, was 2 months pregnant with Bailey's child when she died. Missouri law allows prosecutors to consider the death of a baby before birth in the same way they would consider other murders. Bailey, 33, of St. Louis, and the victim had a stormy relationship. He pleaded guilty of domestic battery on April 1 last year for having slapped Banks in a motel in Vienna, Ill. For a time, she had a protection order against him. After the murder on May 1, Bailey fled, and state troopers caught him near Columbia, S.C.. Eric Banks said he was in Texas when Bailey killed his sister. He told Gaertner on Friday that his niece "is a strong little girl but she has to go through life with the memory of what happened. Her first memory of death was her own mother." Bev Beimdiek, one of Bailey's attorneys, said, "I speak for Mr. Bailey that he is remorseful for what he has done." She added that he had pleaded guilty, in part, to spare the family the trauma of a trial. [LifeNews.com November 12, 2002] Reprinted with permission by LifeNews.com. LifeNews.com is a daily compilation of pro-life news and information. To subscribe, visit LifeNews.com.
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