• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Inquiry call over US execution

LAWYERS for a convicted double-murderer whose lethal injection in Arizona dragged on for two hours, while witnesses watched him gasping for breath and attorneys scrambled to halt the process, have called for a review of the "horrifically botched execution".

The ordeal in putting Joseph Wood, 55, to death on Wednesday at a prison southeast of Phoenix marked the third instance this year of a lethal injection gone awry, after mishaps in Ohio and Oklahoma that renewed the US debate over capital punishment.

Dale Baich, one of Wood's lawyers, who watched the execution and tried in vain to stop it, said: "He gasped and struggled to breathe for about an hour and 40 minutes." He called for an independent inquiry.

State Corrections Director Charles Ryan disputed suggestions Wood, who shot dead his ex-girlfriend and her father in 1989, had suffered.

Contextual targeting label: 
Transport Tragedy

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.