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Sniper John Allen Muhammad is slated to be executed by injection Tuesday in the state of Virginia for the slaying of Dean Harold Meyers in October of 2002. If you say something is slated, this means it is arranged or scheduled to happen at a particular time or date. A slaying is the act of killing someone. It comes from the irregular verb ‘to slay’ (slay, slew, slain).
Muhammad unleashed terror in Virginia, Maryland and Washington D.C. in 2002. In other words he did something that had a very powerful and harmful effect on those regions! Here’s another example of this word’s use: “The passing of the health bill in the House of Representatives will unleash a storm of criticism by its opponents.”
He led a 2-man sniper team that claimed the lives of 10 people. To claim the life of someone means that something or someone causes the death of someone. For example, the H1N1 flu virus has claimed the lives of children in France and the United States. AIDS (SIDA) has claimed the lives of millions of people around the world and Hitler’s holocaust claimed the lives of millions of Jews during WWII.
Mr. Muhammad and his teenage partner in crime left a twisted trail of death behind them. To twist means to bend or turn into different shapes. If a road is twisted, there are a lot of turns and thus is not a straight road. However, another meaning of twisted means behaving in a strange and and/or cruel way. We could say that Muhammad had a twisted mind. You might recognize this word from the American heavy metal band, Twisted Sister.