Executed Inmate Summary – Stephen Wayne Anderson

WARNING: The following crime summaries contain graphic descriptions of one or more murders and may not be suitable for all audiences.

stephen w anderson mugshot

Name: Anderson, Stephen Wayne
CDC# C33900
Sex: M

  • Alias: None
  • Race: White
  • Date Received: 07/30/1981
  • Education: Unknown
  • Location: San Quentin State Prison
  • Married: No


  • County of Trial: San Bernardino
  • Sentence Date: 07/24/1981
  • County of Residence: Unknown
  • County of Offense: San Bernardino
  • Offense Date: NA
  • Court Action: Affirmed
  • Court Date: 12/27/1990
  • Case #: SCR36938

Victims: Elizabeth Lyman (female)

Co-Defendant: None


Stephen Wayne Anderson was convicted of one count of first-degree murder with special circumstances and one count of residential burglary in the May 26, 1980 murder of Elizabeth Lyman. A San Bernardino County jury sentenced Anderson to death on July 24, 1981.

Elizabeth Lyman was an 81-year-old retired piano teacher, and lived by herself in Bloomington, San Bernardino County. About an hour after midnight on Monday, May 26, 1980, Anderson, a 26-year-old escapee from Utah State Prison, broke into her home, and cut her telephone line with a knife, believing no one was at home. He was startled when she woke up in her bed. He shot her in the face from a distance of between eight and 20 inches with his .45 caliber handgun as she lay in her bed. Anderson then covered her body with a blanket, recovered the expelled casing from the hollow point bullet that killed her, and ransacked her house for money. He found less than $100.

Anderson next sat down in Mrs. Lyman’s kitchen to eat a dinner of noodles and eggs. His meal was interrupted, however, by sheriff’s deputies called to the scene by a suspicious neighbor who had been awakened by barking dogs and had seen Anderson in Mrs. Lyman’s house through a window. The deputies arrested Anderson at 3:47 a.m., and took him to the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Substation in Fontana.

Anderson was an escapee from Utah State Prison at the time of Mrs. Lyman’s death. He escaped on Nov. 24, 1979, and had been incarcerated for one count of aggravated burglary in 1971 and three counts of aggravated burglary in 1973. While incarcerated at Utah State Prison, Anderson murdered an inmate, assaulted another inmate, and assaulted a correctional officer. Anderson also admitted to six other contract killings in Las Vegas, Nevada that happened prior to the crime for which he received a death sentence.

While incarcerated in the California Department of Corrections, Anderson received CDC 115s (Rule Violation Report). He assaulted another inmate in 1987, used force and violence in 1985, and used force and violence while fighting in 1984.


At 12:18 a.m., January 29, 2002, the execution by lethal injection of Stephen Wayne Anderson began in San Quentin State Prison’s execution chamber. He was pronounced dead at 12:30 a.m.

Condemned inmate Stephen Wayne Anderson has selected the following for his last meal: Two (2) grilled cheese sandwiches (American cheese), one (1) pint of cottage cheese (plain, no fruit), Hominy/corn mixture (regular hominy, regular corn), one (1) piece of peach pie, one (1) pint of chocolate chip ice cream, and radishes.

It should be noted that inmate Anderson did not request any special food items for his scheduled visits, January 24-28, 2002.

When asked by the Warden if he had any last words, Mr. Anderson was very adamant that he did not.


  • NA