Man Convicted of Brutal Double Murder Faces Execution

A Smith County family has just two more days to wait for justice to be delivered.

The daughter of Frank and Bertha Cobb says the family is ready to witness Thursday's scheduled execution of 30-year-old Newton Anderson.  Anderson was convicted and sentenced to die for binding, robbing, and shooting the Cobb at their New Harmony home in 1999.

"I just saw a man walking up the road who didn't belong there," says neighbor Bill Ashley, who remembers that day in 1999.  He says he saw Newton Anderson walking along the road

"He was looking like he was going somewhere.  He knew where he was going. I didn't think anything about that."  Not long after, Anderson arrived at the Cobb's home next door.

"They had goats, and chickens and cows, and they didn't bother anybody," says Carolyn Sanders about her parents... and the crime no one deserved to have inflicted on them.

"You want to know why [it happened], but I don't think he knows why to this day, jurors agreed Newton Anderson overpowered Frank Cobb, when Bertha came home.  In an act of unspeakable cruelty, Bertha is attacked in front of her husband.

Matt Bingham is Smith County's District Attorney:

"As Frank Cobb is tied up, he proceeded to put duct tape over the mouth of Bertha Cobb, and while she's suffocating, he's raping her," he says.

Anderson then shot Bertha Cobb many times with a small rifle, then got a shotgun and shot both husband and wife.  The home was then set on fire.

"He was there not only to take their property, but to torture them, do things that are hard to imagine that one person could do to another," Bingham says.

The nightmare continues for Carolyn and her family.

"To think about what he did to my mother -- my mother alone -- hurts," she says.

Carolyn says Newton Anderson has said nothing in eight years about why he killed. She doesn't expect a death room confession.

Carolyn, her brother, and her son will still be there to witness Anderson's death Thursday.

DNA evidence and items stolen from the home tied Anderson to the crime. He has an appeal on file with the U.S. Supreme Court, though District Attorney Matt Bingham says any stay of Thursday's execution is unlikely.

KLTV 7's Morgan Palmer will be a media witness to the execution, and will report Thursday from Huntsville.