Margie Velma Barfield (ne Margie Velma Bullard) (October 29, 1932 November 2, 1984) was a serial killer, convicted of six murders. She was the first woman in the United States to be executed after the 1976 resumption of capital punishment and the first since 1962. She was also the first woman to be executed by lethal injection. Velma Barfield was born in rural South Carolina, but grew up near Fayetteville, North Carolina. Her father reportedly was abusive and she resented her mother who did not stop the beatings. She escaped by marrying Thomas Burke in 1949. The couple had two children and were reportedly happy until Barfield had a hysterectomy and developed back pain. These events led to a behavioral change in Barfield and an eventual drug addiction. Thomas Burke began to drink and Barfield's complaints turned into bitter arguments. On April 4, 1969, after Burke had passed out, Barfield and the children left the house, returning to find the home burned and Burke dead.
Contributions by Good Olfactory, Hoops gza, and Jim Michael.