Georgia inmate to face capital punishment, first since failed Okla. execution

A Georgia inmate is scheduled to die by lethal injection on Tuesday, in what would be the first in the United States since a botched execution in Oklahoma in April. Credit:
A Georgia inmate is scheduled to die by lethal injection on Tuesday, in what would be the first in the United States since a botched execution in Oklahoma in April.

A Georgia inmate is scheduled to die by lethal injection on Tuesday, in what would be the first in the United States since a botched execution in Oklahoma in April ignited renewed debate and scrutiny of the death penalty.

The Georgia execution will be closely watched amid lingering questions about what went wrong during the flawed lethal injection this spring, said Richard Dieter, executive director of the non-profit Death Penalty Information Center.

“We’re in a new climate,” he said. “Everyone – the federal government, the president – is watching.”

Oklahoma murderer and rapist Clayton Lockett died of an apparent heart attack about 30 minutes after prison officials halted his execution, having failed to properly administer the lethal injection.

A preliminary autopsy released by his lawyers last week showed the state did not properly insert an intravenous line to deliver lethal drugs to the inmate, bypassing strong veins in his arms and using a riskier entry point in the groin area.

The White House criticized the execution as being beyond humane standards.

Executions in several states have been stayed for various reasons since Lockett’s death, including the case of Missouri double murderer John Winfield, who had been due to die on Wednesday.

Georgia plans to execute Marcus Wellons, 58, by lethal injection at 7 p.m. EDT (2300 GMT) for the 1989 rape and strangulation of his 15-year-old neighbor, India Roberts, whom he abducted as she walked to a school bus stop.

Wellons had sought a new trial on the grounds that his case was tainted when jurors gave erotic chocolate gag gifts to the judge and a bailiff. Appellate judges ruled the gifts were inappropriate but did not affect the proceedings.

On Monday, the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles turned down Wellons’ request for clemency.

Wellons would be the first inmate executed in Georgia since the state’s Supreme Court upheld a new law in May shielding the identity and methods of companies that make its lethal injection drugs.

Georgia uses one drug to carry out its lethal injections, while Oklahoma used a three-drug cocktail in Lockett’s execution, Dieter said.

Wellons would be the 21st person executed in the United States this year, Dieter said. Florida also has an execution planned for Wednesday.


Mayor pledges lower greenhouse gas emissions from New…

Just hours before the start of the People’s Climate March on Sunday, and two days ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit, Mayor Bill de…


The best places to see the Northern Lights…

A large solar storm hit the Earth's atmosphere and will tonight illuminate the skies with aurora borealis -- also known as the Northern Lights.


Police officer killed Sunday morning Bronx crash, 8…

One NYPD police officer was killed and eight other officers were injured early Sunday morning when the van they were traveling in crashed  in the…


Pennsylvania police shooter manhunt near home of suspect's…

A police manhunt intensified on Friday for the gunman who killed an officer and wounded another in an ambush at a Pennsylvania police barracks a week ago.


'How to Get Away with' mischaracterizing Shondra Rhimes

Shonda Rhimes read Alessandra Stanley's New York Times piece about her being "an angry black woman" and "a romance writer" and it did not sit well with her.


New nude celebrity selfies leak … and Clay…

A new batch of nude selfies of Rihanna, Kim Kardashian, Vanessa Hudgens, Lake Bell and Avril Lavigne hit the web and Clay Aiken has something to say!


James Spader's route to villainy on "The Blacklist"

In honor of the second season premiere of "The Blacklist" tonight, where James Spader plays good guy/bad guy Raymond “Red” Reddington, it’s a good time to look back at Spader’s…


True Detective


Jay Cutler takes Marc Trestman's coaching to heart

While Jay Cutler turned to an autobiography on the man who would be his head coach, Trestman had personal experience with the player.


Jets vs. Bears: 3 things to watch

Jets fans likely chalked up Monday's matchup with the Bears as a loss when the NFL schedule came out. But given their team's play so…


Rashad Jennings carries Giants in first win this…

Rashad Jennings, who came to New York from Oakland last year, by way of Jacksonville, was highly coveted this offseason by general manager Jerry Reese.


3 things we learned as Giants pick up…

The Giants picked up their first win of the season over the Texans.


Here's how to make the most of visit…

You’re primped, you’re looking polished, you’re prepared with a stack of resumes. Job fair hunters, unite! There are a few things to keep in mind…


Learn how to study effectively and stop cramming…

Picture this: It’s midterm week, and college students everywhere are trying to frantically memorize all of the math formulas, political theories and historical facts that…


How motherhood inspired Bethenny Frankel's new book

Bethenny Frankel's new children's book is about how her daughter and dog didn't always get alone.


A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.