View Full Version : Richard Longworth SC RIP

04-18-2005, 06:47 AM
Myrtle Beach Online (

"Spartanburg man executed for movie theater killings in 1991," by Michael Kerr." (Associated Press April 16, 2005)

COLUMBIA, S.C. - In his final statement, a Spartanburg man convicted in the killings of two Upstate movie theater employees more than 14 years ago said he didn't pull the trigger, but he apologized to the victims' families. Richard Longworth, 36, died by lethal injection at 6:14 p.m. Friday.

In the statement read by attorney David Belser, Longworth said he would not ask the families of Alex Hopps and Todd Green for forgiveness, because he knew it wouldn't be granted. "I am morally and legally responsible for what happened," Longworth said in the statement. "I hope they also know how deeply, truly sorry I am for what I have done. I hope my death brings them the peace they deserve." Green's mother and Hopps' father and sister witnessed the execution, the second stemming from a brutal double murder that Spartanburg residents still remember more than a decade later. Longworth stared at the ceiling, never turning his head to look at the witnesses through the barred window. Shortly after 6 p.m. he was given the lethal injection. His chest moved up and down rapidly for a minute or two and then all was still.

The final chapter in a 14-year story was complete. Longworth was the second of two men executed in the shooting deaths of 19-year-old Hopps and 24-year-old Green on Jan. 7, 1991. He lost a final appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday afternoon.

Longworth and his co-defendant David Rocheville decided to go to the WestGate Mall movie theater in Spartanburg where they used to work and rob it, prosecutors said. They dragged Hopps, an usher and University of South Carolina student, outside. Longworth pinned Hopps against a bar and Rocheville shot Hopps in the head. The pair convinced Green, a theater manager, to let them back inside. They ordered Green to empty the safe and forced him into a van. After driving away from the theater, Longworth stopped and ordered Green to get out, get on his knees and face forward. Rocheville then shot Green in the head. Rocheville was executed in 1999.

"I hope my family knows how much I love them, and how ashamed I am that I have tarnished their name," Longworth said in his statement. "For the last 14 years I have tried to live my life as cleanly and as honorably as I was raised." Longworth had a hamburger, french fries and chocolate milkshake for his final meal.

"I would just like to say that two young men, two bright shining stars of South Carolina are no longer with us," Hopps' sister, Caroline Short, said after Longworth's execution. "They had a future. It's hard to really say how much I love my brother ... He told me he loved me regularly." Todd was Mary Ann Green's only child. "I can't explain how hard it is to go along without him," she said, fighting back tears.

About ten people protested outside the Broad River Correctional Facility carrying signs denouncing the death penalty. Margaret Abbott said she's been protesting executions at the facility for ten years, and that she is a friend of Longworth's mother. "Execution is not a solution," Abbott said before Longworth was put to death. "It doesn't solve anything. It doesn't heal anybody. You've got victims on both sides." But while the execution can't make the pain go away, Hopps' father said it does help to know the process is finally over. "We got justice today," said Alexander Hopps, who wanted to remember his son for what he was, not for the crime that ended his life. "He was a great person," Hopps said of his son. "We miss him every day. We think about him every day. I hope he's up there smiling down on us."

04-18-2005, 08:21 AM
another sad story :(

04-18-2005, 08:32 AM
May he rest in peace now and God surround him with angels.

May the victims families have their closure as well, however, I really don't know how as this is just another legalized killing. However, perhaps in some way they will feel justice has been served.

I just would hope that one day there would be another form of justice.

04-18-2005, 02:40 PM
Rest in Peace and my thoughts go to all involved. :(