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Man dies of heart attack after botched execution

Oklahoma Set to Execute Two Men Using Untested Drug Cocktail

McALESTER, Okla. (AP) - An Oklahoma inmate whose execution was halted Tuesday because the delivery of a new drug combination was botched died of a heart attack, the head of the state Department of Corrections said.

Director Robert Patton said inmate Clayton Lockett died Tuesday after all three drugs were administered.

Patton halted Lockett's execution about 20 minutes after the first drug was administered. He said there had been vein failure.

The execution began at 6:23 p.m. when officials began administering the first drug, and a doctor declared Lockett to be unconscious at 6:33 p.m.

About three minutes later, though, Lockett began breathing heavily, writhing on the gurney, clenching his teeth and straining to lift his head off the pillow. After about three minutes, a doctor lifted the sheet that was covering Lockett to examine the injection site.

"There was some concern at that time that the drugs were not having that (desired) effect, and the doctor observed the line at that time and determined the line had blown," Patton said at a news conference afterward, referring to Lockett's vein rupturing.

After that, an official who was inside the death chamber lowered the blinds, preventing those in the viewing room from seeing what was happening.

Patton then made a series of phone calls before calling a halt to the execution.

"After conferring with the warden, and unknown how much drugs went into him, it was my decision at that time to stop the execution," Patton told reporters.

He also issued a 14-day postponement in the execution of inmate Charles Warner, who had been scheduled to die on Tuesday, two hours after Lockett was put to death.

"It was extremely difficult to watch," Lockett's attorney, David Autry, said afterward. He also questioned the amount of the sedative midazolam that was given to Lockett, saying he thought that the 100 milligrams called for in the state's execution protocol was "an overdose quantity."

It was the first time Oklahoma administered midazolam as the first drug in its execution drug combination, but other states have used it. Florida administers 500 milligrams of midazolam as part of its three-drug combination.

A four-time felon, Lockett, 38, was convicted of shooting 19-year-old Stephanie Neiman with a sawed-off shotgun and watching as two accomplices buried her alive in rural Kay County in 1999 after Neiman and a friend arrived at a home the men were robbing.

Warner had been scheduled to be put to death two hours later in the same room and on the same gurney. The 46-year-old was convicted of raping and killing his roommate's 11-month-old daughter in 1997. He has maintained his innocence.

Lockett and Warner had sued the state for refusing to disclose details about the execution drugs, including where Oklahoma obtained them.

The case, filed as a civil matter, placed Oklahoma's two highest courts at odds and prompted calls for the impeachment of state Supreme Court justices after the court last week issued a rare stay of execution. The high court later dissolved its stay and dismissed the inmates' claim that they were entitled to know the source of the drugs.

By then, Gov. Mary Fallin had weighed into the matter by issuing a stay of execution of her own - a one-week delay in Lockett's execution that resulted in both men being scheduled to die on the same day.

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miltrand7 April 30 2014 at 4:23 PM

good,he's dead.

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TEK April 30 2014 at 5:51 PM

Who the **** cares this man shot a 19 year old women and then assisted others burying her alive. This scum should have been lynched on the spot!!! He has NO rights "HE KILLED ANOTHER HUMAN!!" Maybe we should have humanly shot him and buried him alive!! Burn in Hell ******* and your crazy family.

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1 reply
wasadewb4u40 TEK April 30 2014 at 11:59 PM

I agree with your anger, but to say lynched is just wrong, they used to lynch innocent black people for sport. This isn't about race. And to blame the family for his actions is just wrong. Not all families are like the criminal. Some families of criminals are fine upstanding, law abiding citizens and shamed by the actions of their family members. Be angry but don't let that anger hurt other innocent victims.

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Dan April 30 2014 at 2:37 PM

here's how the twisted mind of liberals work:
This murdering slug suffering a few minutes after what he did to that girl disgusts liberals more than aborting soon to be born children, who it has been proven can feel pain. Really???

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terry April 30 2014 at 2:59 PM

like hillary said, whats the difference!

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dotthurman April 30 2014 at 1:42 PM

Did I just read he help bury a teenage girl alive? I doesn't deserve any mercy. The irony he was suing the state because he was concern how he will die. The nerves!

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LES HOFFER April 30 2014 at 2:49 PM

Perhaps the basis for future argument will latch on to cruel and unusual punishment side of this. Actually that probably has been done. The curel and unusual is a partof the rule of the land.
As we see here, society does not condone heinous barbaric acts against our children. As we speak out it becomes quite evident that abominable acts od this nature leave us with little or no compassion for the guilty.
Occasionally a vein collapses, a rope breaks or the chair catches fire so it is not unusual, although not likely, that the process falters.
Therefore it could be said that this is not cruel and unusual punishment. There are no guarantees that the guilty should have any expectations that they would enjoy this. expect that they will enjoy this.
Blindfold and a well placed round in the Medulla oblongata should do the deed.

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touringam4me April 30 2014 at 2:02 PM

Who really cares ,did he give his victims a choice of a painless death ?All the sob sisters will be calling the civil liberty people and whinning how terrible this was.I think they give them the the little blue that the dentist use then they feel any pain.

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Jeffrey S. Grant April 30 2014 at 2:51 PM

Botched execution? I think not. The ciminal is dead. As a small bonus, he suffered a tiny bit (as compared to what his victim endured.) The state should use the same drug combination for all future executions. The only thing that was botched by the state was that this four time felon was released from prison after his first three crimes such that he could commit the horrible crime for which he received the death penalty.

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Tom April 30 2014 at 1:12 PM

Seems to me that the execution was a success. If there is a problem, it's bleeding hearts concern the animals who were not concerned about their victims. A simple solution would be to order the execution to be carried out in the same manner as the murder.

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ljcjersey April 30 2014 at 1:07 PM

Why is it always about the prisoners rights? This poor felon had to suffer? What a damn shame. Why not bury him alive the same as his victim?

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