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NACDL News: Grotesque Spectacle in Oklahoma Demands Immediate End to The Death Penalty in America

By Ivan J. Dominguez and Isaac Kramer

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On the evening of April 29, 2014, Oklahoma death row inmate Clayton Lockett died of an apparent heart attack some 43 minutes following the state of Oklahoma administering its first injection during the execution. It was reported that after the injection Lockett’s vein “exploded,” and observers reported he remained conscious and even attempted to speak. This grotesque spectacle prompted Oklahoma authorities to suspend a second planned execution that night. It should prompt all U.S. jurisdictions that have yet to end the death penalty to do so, immediately and permanently.

NACDL President Jerry J. Cox said: “NACDL unequivocally opposes the death penalty on numerous grounds, but this latest installment in a long series of botched executions should shock the conscience of all Americans, including those who have to this point supported what is, at its core, a barbaric and medieval practice. The death penalty is a stain on the honor of this great nation. And it must stop. Now.”

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  • Media inquiries: Contact NACDL's Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan J. Dominguez at 202-465-7662 or idominguez@nacdl.org
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