Oklahoma authorities moved to delay the execution of three men scheduled to die from lethal injections late last week mainly because of the concern generated by the recent and egregious botched execution of Clayton Lockett last April. The Oklahoma Attorney General filed the necessary paperwork to temporarily suspend the executions of Richard Glossip, John Grant, and Charles Warner until at least 2015. The move was prompted by the state’s use of a mixture of lethal drugs without proper protocols and training in place. The mixture of drugs became the default method preferred by the state when the manufacturer of the old drug commonly used in such executions stopped selling the drug for ethical and humanity reasons. The Attorney General requested the delay in part because the state feels additional training is needed by those conducting the executions. Lawyers for the condemned men maintain that the procedure in place now violates due process of law and the U.S. Constitution ban on cruel and unusual punishment. Lockett died 43 minutes after the procedure started from apparent heart failure and exhibited clear signs of agony. He had been shocked with a Taser on the morning of his scheduled execution because he didn’t want to leave his cell. Few people had sympathy for Lockett; he was convicted and sentenced for the 1999 kidnapping, rape, and murder of a 19-year old girl who he then buried alive. Prison officials claim the drugs were not the blame for the lengthy execution. Meanwhile, the state spent over $100,000 renovating the execution chamber at the prison. Among the changes are an “electric bed”, new intercom system and atomic clock. Additional space was also created. Prison officials plan to reduce the number of media execution witnesses from 12 to 5 drawing criticism from civil rights groups and the media.
BRENDA E. ANDREW ONLY FEMALE ON DEATH ROW IN OKLAHOMA
Brenda Andrew was convicted, along with her lover, for the first-degree murder of her estranged husband, Robert Andrew. The state contended that the two plotted the assassination in an attempt to collect on the husband’s life insurance. Andrew was 37 at the time of the November 20th, 2001 murder and is now 45. She was born into a very religious family in Enid, Oklahoma and attended church regularly often doing volunteer work. Robert was apparently killed by a shotgun blast at the scene of a staged robbery by his wife and lover. Although the murder was for profit and appeared planned well in advance, it doesn’t seem to be of the type where the death penalty is imposed.
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