Woman Convicted in Girl’s Running Death Dies
According to the state’s women’s prison, 50-year-old Joyce Hardin Garrard has died less than a year into her life-without-parole sentence for the killing of her grand-daughter. She died five days after being stricken at the prison. The cause of death wasn't immediately available, but defense attorney Dani Bone says Garrard apparently suffered a heart attack Sunday minutes after visiting relatives at the state women's prison. She was taken from the prison by helicopter ambulance to a Montgomery hospital where she was placed on life support and eventually died. Last year, an Etowah County jury convicted Garrard of killing 9-year-old Savannah Hardin by making her run as punishment for a lie about eating candy in 2012. Evidence during the trial showed that girl ran for hours outside Garrard's home in rural northeastern Alabama. The child's stepmother, Jessica Mae Hardin, is set for trial in June on a murder charge for allegedly failing to stop the punishment. Hardin, who is free on bond, has pleaded not guilty.