Sep 19, 1958Florida, United StatesDied on 30 Sep 2009 (aged 51)
About John Couey
Jessica Marie Lunsford (October 6, 1995 – February 27, 2005) was an American nine-year-old girl from Homosassa, Florida, who was murdered in February 2005.
Lunsford was abducted from her home in the early morning of February 24, 2005, by John Couey, a 46-year-old convicted sex offender who lived nearby.
Couey held her captive over the weekend, during which she was raped and later murdered by being buried alive.
The media extensively covered the investigation and trial of Couey.
Lunsford's murder became a cause célèbre that influenced the introduction of legislation in Florida known as Jessica's Law, designed to protect potential victims and reduce a sexual offender's ability to re-offend, which has since influenced similar legislation in 42 other states. On August 24, 2007, a judge in Inverness convicted Couey for the kidnapping, sexual battery, and first degree murder of Lunsford, and sentenced him to death.
However, Couey died of natural causes in 2009, before his sentence could be carried out.