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Lethal Injection

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NEWS
February 2, 2008
EVERY DAY, some junkie dies from a heroin overdose. This drug is considered the ultimate analgesic - overdose victims don't cry out in pain before their lights go out. A few years ago, the scourge of a deadly heroin/fentanyl mix fueled an OD epidemic across the nation. The blend's lethal effectiveness greatly enhanced its reputation on the streets, increasing the addicts' desire for it. Lately, there's been a focus on whether convicts feel pain during lethal injection. If a court ordered an execution using heroin/fentanyl, the result would be a death penalty quite the opposite of the "cruel and unusual" punishment our Constitution says can't be inflicted on the condemned.
NEWS
May 16, 1986 | By Alison Carper, Special to The Inquirer
The state Senate yesterday voted to replace hanging with lethal injection as Delaware's official method of execution, a move that the bill's sponsor said should make it easier to obtain convictions in capital-murder cases. The legislation, which was amended by the Senate, now goes to the House, where it is expected to win approval easily. The House passed an unamended version of the bill last year. Senate Majority Leader Thomas B. Sharp (D., Pinecrest), the sponsor, said he hoped the legislation would prevent defense attorneys from drawing sympathy from jurors in capital-punishment trials by graphically describing the stages of death by hanging.
NEWS
May 24, 1988 | By Robert Zausner, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
Lethal injection would replace the electric chair as the instrument used to carry out the death penalty in Pennsylvania under a measure passed by the Senate yesterday. The bill, which would effectively dismantle the electric chair that has been used at Rockview State Prison 350 times since 1915, was passed by the Senate, 36-11, after a brief debate. The measure now goes to the House, where Judiciary Committee Chairman William DeWeese (D., Greene) said he probably would delay a vote until the fall to give members time to cool off over the slaying in Harrisburg last week of Rep. William Telek (R., Cambria)
NEWS
November 30, 1990 | By Robert Zausner, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
Gov. Casey yesterday signed into law a dozen bills passed by the General Assembly toward the conclusion of its 1989-90 session, including a measure replacing the electric chair with lethal injection as the means of execution in the state. Benjamin Livingood, a spokesman for the state Corrections Department, said the state's electric chair, kept at the state prison in Rockview and used for 350 executions between 1915 and 1962, would be dismantled. There has not been an execution in Pennsylvania since 1962.
NEWS
November 15, 1990 | By Robert Zausner, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
The House gave final legislative approval yesterday to a bill that would replace the state's electric chair - used to kill 350 convicted murderers since 1915 - and make lethal injection the means of execution in Pennsylvania. The legislation passed by a vote of 170-21 over the objections of legal and religious groups that disputed claims that the use of drugs - specifically an ultrashort-acting barbiturate and a paralytic agent - to induce death is more humane. It appeared likely Gov. Casey would sign the bill, which was passed easily by the Senate in April.
NEWS
March 2, 1988 | By Elizabeth Hallowell, Special to The Inquirer
To a casual observer, the narrow road leading to a tan trailer on the grounds of the Delaware Correctional Center here continues past the trailer and toward the main prison compound. But for Delaware's six death-row inmates, the road may end at the trailer, which houses the state's brand-new lethal-injection machine. Situated about 10 feet from the prison's isolated maximum-security building, the aluminum-sided 14-by-50-foot trailer gives no external clue to its purpose. Inside, however, against stark white walls, a computerized machine with a control panel of switches and multicolored lights stands ready to regulate and track the injection of three deadly chemicals into the veins of a condemned inmate.
NEWS
February 21, 2004 | By Robert Moran and Kaitlin Gurney INQUIRER TRENTON BUREAU
A New Jersey appellate court yesterday ordered a halt to executions while the state explains why its lethal-injection procedures are not "arbitrary and unreasonable. " There are no executions imminent, and the three-judge panel clearly stated that it was not addressing the constitutionality of capital punishment. The death penalty in New Jersey was reinstituted in 1982, but the state has not executed an inmate since 1963. Still, the decision - focused on whether the effects of a lethal injection could be reversed in case of a last-second stay - was hailed as a landmark by some legal experts.
NEWS
July 7, 1999 | by April Adamson and Jim Smith, Daily News Staff Writers
The "House of Horrors" killer got his wish last night. Gary Heidnik was put to death by lethal injection at Rockview State Correctional Institution in Centre County. At 10:17 p.m., the cocktail of death began flowing into his veins as 12 witnesses and four women, relatives of Heidnik's victims, looked on. He was pronounced dead at 10:29 by Centre County Coroner Scott Sayers. The victims' relatives applauded when his death was announced over a speaker. One woman was heard to say, "Thank you, Jesus.
NEWS
February 5, 2005 | By Robert Moran INQUIRER TRENTON BUREAU
Opponents of the death penalty packed a state government hearing yesterday and voiced support for better media access at executions to increase public awareness of how a condemned prisoner is killed. The state Department of Corrections held the hearing to allow comment on two proposed rule revisions intended to address concerns raised by an appeals court nearly a year ago. A three-judge panel last February ordered a halt to executions while the state explained why its lethal-injection procedures were not "arbitrary and unreasonable.
NEWS
June 29, 2000 | by Joseph Perkins
"I have already killed three people, and I'm going to kill you. "You don't mean nothing to me. . . " Those were the words of Gary Graham, as attested by a 57-year-old woman on whom the future death-row inmate took pity, merely abducting, robbing and raping her, rather than taking her life. Bobby Grant Lambert was not so lucky. When he refused to blithely hand over his wallet to Graham one fateful day in May 1981, Graham put a gun to his cranium and blew him away. Last week in Huntsville, Texas, the convicted killer finally met his maker, in spite of the last-minute maneuverings of his lawyers.
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NEWS
September 14, 2014 | By Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writer
Citing the state's need to acquire the drugs required to administer a lethal injection, Gov. Corbett on Friday granted a temporary reprieve for an inmate scheduled for execution this month. Hubert Lester Michael Jr., 58, who pleaded guilty in the 1993 kidnapping, rape, and murder of Trista Eng, 16, in York County and was sentenced to death, had been scheduled for execution Sept. 22. But that had to be put off, the governor's office said, to allow the Department of Corrections to acquire the drugs required by state law for the lethal injection.
NEWS
September 13, 2014 | By Joseph A. Gambardello, Inquirer Staff Writer
Four news organizations, including The Inquirer, filed a motion in federal court Thursday seeking the name of the firm contracted to provide the drugs Pennsylvania would use in an execution by lethal injection scheduled for this month. The state has said the compounding pharmacy it contracted to supply the drugs would likely refuse to do so if its name were made public, according to the court papers filed in Harrisburg. In the motion filed by the American Civil Liberties Union, The Inquirer, Guardian US, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and Philadelphia City Paper said recent botched executions in other states "have greatly increased the public's interest in lethal injection executions.
NEWS
May 7, 2014 | By Marie McCullough, Inquirer Staff Writer
John G. McDougall, 82, whose storied legal career in Delaware County included a 12-year battle that cleared a teenager convicted of murder, died Thursday, May 1, at Kindred Acute Care in Havertown of complications from a fall. Until that fall about a month ago, he worked full time at Minisec Inc., the offender rehabilitation-services company he founded in 1995 with son Sean and daughter Colleen Marsini. Mr. McDougall, who lived most recently in Wallingford, was appointed Delaware County's first public defender in the late 1970s.
NEWS
November 9, 2012 | By Jonathan Lai, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
BELLEFONTE, Pa. - Death-row inmate Hubert L. Michael Jr. has been informed that his life has been spared, for at least two weeks, by the U.S. Supreme Court, authorities said. Michael, the convicted murderer of a 16-year-old girl, was scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection at 7 p.m. in a central Pennsylvania prison near State College. But six hours before he was to be executed, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit granted a stay. The state then filed its own appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to allow the execution to continue.
NEWS
September 13, 2012
Time is running out for Gov. Corbett to commute the sentence of an inmate facing execution on Oct. 3 for murdering the Philadelphia man who sexually abused him as a child. Whether or not a city judge intervenes to halt Pennsylvania's first execution in more than a decade, the course for Corbett is clear: clemency for condemned killer Terrance "Terry" Williams. For their part, pardons officials who will deliberate next week in Harrisburg on Williams' fate should take the next critical step in prompting the governor to act - with a recommendation that Corbett commute Williams' death sentence to life without parole.
NEWS
July 25, 2012 | By Allison Steele, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Authorities on Tuesday charged Philadelphia's "Black Madam" with murder for administering a series of fatal silicone buttock injections to a 20-year-old British tourist at an airport hotel last year. Padge Victoria Windslowe, 42, was charged with third-degree murder, conspiracy, reckless endangerment, and other violations in the February 2011 death of Claudia Seye Aderotimi. Windslowe faces up to 44 to 88 years in prison if convicted. She is scheduled to appear in court Aug. 8. The death of Aderotimi, an aspiring dancer from London who traveled to Philadelphia with friends and paid $1,800 for the buttock-enhancement injections, drew international attention and led reporters from the United Kingdom to flock to Philadelphia.
NEWS
January 16, 2012
DOVER, Del. - The Delaware Board of Pardons recommends that Gov. Jack Markell grant clemency to a man facing execution Friday for the 1990 murder of his former girlfriend. The state is scheduled to execute Robert Gattis, 49, by lethal injection, but the board announced Sunday it had voted, 4-1, to ask Markell to commute the sentence to life in prison without parole provided Gattis agrees to spend the rest of his life in prison and not seek further appeals or pardons. "The governor will consider the board's written decision and carefully review the case," Markell spokeswoman Cathy Rossi said.
NEWS
November 30, 2011 | By Margery A. Beck, Associated Press
OMAHA, Neb. - A Swiss pharmaceutical company is asking Nebraska officials to return a drug the state plans to use to execute death-row inmates. Earlier this month, the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services announced it had obtained a new supply of sodium thiopental, one of three drugs needed to carry out executions by lethal injection, from the Swiss company Naari AG. The drug is no longer manufactured in the United States and is in scarce supply...
NEWS
September 22, 2011 | By Greg Bluestein, Associated Press
JACKSON, Ga. - Georgia executed Troy Davis Wednesday night for the murder of an off-duty police officer, a crime he denied committing right to the end as supporters around the world mourned and declared that an innocent man had been put to death. Defiant to the end, he told relatives of Mark MacPhail that his 1989 slaying was not his fault. "I did not have a gun," he insisted. "For those about to take my life," he told prison officials, "may God have mercy on your souls.
NEWS
September 22, 2011
A GROUP of about 100 gathered in Center City last night, joining an international push against the execution of a Georgia cop- killer whose conviction has been called into question. The group gathered at 15th and Market streets to support Troy Davis, who was slated to be executed yesterday for killing a police officer in Savannah, Ga., in 1989. It was to no avail. CNN reported that Davis was executed at 11:08 p.m., about an hour after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a last-ditch appeal.
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