UK & World News

  • 18 June 2014, 10:09

First Prisoners Executed Since Botched Injection

Two death row prisoners have been executed in the US - the first since the botched lethal injection of an inmate in April.

Marcus Wellons, 59, was executed by injection in Georgia on Tuesday night after last-minute appeals were denied.

A corrections spokesman says he was pronounced dead an hour after the procedure began with "no noticeable complications".

The execution appeared to take longer than usual because the lethal injection did not start until around 40 minutes after Wellons entered the chamber, the New York Times reported.

Wellons was convicted and sentenced to die in 1993 for the murder of his 15-year-old neighbour who was raped and strangled.

A short while later John Winfield was put to death in Missouri after he was convicted of shooting dead two friends of his girlfriend, Carmelita Donald.

He also shot Ms Donald, the mother of two of his children, in the head, leaving her blind.

Winfield was executed at the state prison in Bonne Terre by lethal injection at 12.01 am and was pronounced dead at 12.10 am, a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety said.

The 46-year-old declined to make a final statement or have a last meal.

Ms Donald was among those who witnessed the execution. She and others present declined to comment.

Another convicted killer, John Ruthell Henry, is scheduled to die later in Florida.

US states with the death penalty have been hit by shortages of lethal injection drugs after European suppliers stopped supplying pentobarbital for use in executions.

The shortages have prompted prison departments in the 32 states that still allow the death penalty to seek new suppliers or new drug protocols.

In Oklahoma in April, Clayton Lockett, a convicted killer and rapist, was put to death by lethal injection in a process that took 43 minutes, well over the expected time of a little over 10 minutes.

He was seen writhing in pain in a spectacle that drew widespread condemnation, including from President Barack Obama.

Since then executions have been delayed as states reviewed their execution procedures.

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