JEFFERSON-There are currently 145 offenders on North Carolina’s Death Row at the state central prison in Raleigh.
One of those individuals is Ashe County’s lone representative on the state’s list of men awaiting death for the atrocities they have committed.
Chris Goss, of Jefferson, was sentenced in Feb. 2005 to death for killing Deborah Veler. This month is the 14-year anniversary of her death and final justice has yet to be served in the case as Goss awaits an execution that may never come.
According to cncpunishment.com and newspaper archives, Veler was at home with her four-year-old grandson when Goss beat her until she was unconscious. After Veler was unconscious, Goss went to his parent’s house to retrieve a roll of duct tape and a change of clothes. Goss tied up Veler with the duct tape, stabbed her over thirty times, and slit her throat. Veler’s body was found with a knife in her throat and a knife in her back. After Goss killed Veler, he ransacked her house and wrote ‘I will kill’ on the sofa to make the murder appear as if it had been in a robbery or done by a crazy person. The prosecution’s evidence included a 23-page confession Goss made to the police. The defense admitted Goss killed Veler but contested premeditation with psychiatric testimony stating Goss had a personality disorder and used alcohol at the time of the murder. The prosecution also presented psychiatric testimony that stated Goss had an anti-social personality disorder but the disorder would not impair his ability to think or plan. During the penalty phase the defense argued Goss had a mental disorder and low IQ.
It is unclear in Goss will ever be put to death for the murder. The last state ordered execution took place more than a decade ago.
Since his conviction, Goss has made numerous petitions to the state’s supreme case to reexamine his case. All of which, were denied.
Reach Jesse Campbell at (336) 846-7164.