Saturday, June 02, 2007

Death Penalty Inmate "Took Too Long To Die"

...say the usual suspects:

The 16 minutes it took Christopher Newton to die once chemicals began flowing into his veins was the longest stretch that any of the state's inmates executed since 1999 has endured, an Associated Press review shows.

During that span Thursday--more than twice as long as usual, and 5 minutes longer than the state's previous longest on record--Newton's stomach heaved, his chin quivered and twitched, and his 6-foot, 265-pound body twice mildly convulsed within the restraints. . . .

"It seems too long," Ohio State University surgeon Jonathan Groner said. "The whole thing seems agonizing."
To quote Tony Soprano: "You don't say..."

He's UNCONSCIOUS, right? Why all the boo hoo hooing?

How about a little perspective, huh?

11:37 a.m.: Signal given for chemicals to begin flowing.
11:39 a.m.: Newton's eyes close.
11:40 a.m.: Newton's belly begins to heave, his chin and face shudder and twitch, and his body twice mildly convulses on the table within his restraints.
11:45 a.m.: Movements stop. (In other words, off to permanent slumberland, asshole)
11:51 a.m.: Curtain between witnesses and death chamber is pulled for coroner examination.
11:53 a.m.: Newton declared dead.

This is all that the AP story had to say about the victim:

Newton had insisted on the death penalty as punishment for choking and beating the victim, 27, his cellmate at the Mansfield Correctional Center, over a chess game in 2001.
OK, but how long did the victim take to die? A rough estimate in a January 2006 AP dispatch:

The man died a few hours after the attack at Ohio State University Medical Center. Newton told authorities he made a rope and later cut a strip from his prison jumpsuit to strangle the victim when the rope broke. He also stomped on the man's head, throat and chest.
Presumably "a few hours" means at least three, so that the victim took at least 164 minutes longer than Newton to die, or at least 11 times as long.


The actually time of death was 11 hours after the savage beating began, or 660 minutes, at least 41 times as long as Newton's sixteen minutes.

You'd think the criminal-coddling crowd would have some sympathy for the victim in this case, since he was a fellow felon, but he was only in for attempted burglary, which we suppose means his life wasn't as valuable as a murderer's.

More on those "few" hours: MANCI nurse Diane Burson testified that when she responded to cell 115, the man was not breathing and had no pulse. Burson and responding paramedics worked diligently, and eventually the victim's heart began to beat. Ditmars testified that while medical personnel were trying to save the man's life, Newton was laughing and yelling, “ ‘Let him die. I killed him.’ ” According to Douglas, Newton said, “ ‘[F]uck that bitch [the victim]. You might as well not even work on him. He is already dead.’ ” Nurse Butcher recalls Newton periodically shouting to the paramedics, “ ‘Stop, let the fucker die.’ ” State Highway Patrol Trooper Doug Hamman described Newton as singing, “‘[T]here is nothing like the taste of fresh blood in the morning.’”

After paramedics established a heartbeat, the man was taken to MedCentral Hospital, then flown to the Ohio State University Medical Center, where he was
declared brain dead around 2:30 p.m. After an autopsy, Dr. Dorothy Dean, a
forensic pathologist, concluded that he had died from a ligature strangulation. The victim also suffered other injuries to his head and body consistent with his having been kicked or stomped on.

After the assault, Newton told Lieutenant Hilbert Mealey, a MANCI CO, that he had allowed the man to lie for an hour in the cell because Newton knew that paramedics would try to save his life. Newton told Mealey that he had more fun in prison than on the outside. MANCI Lieutenant Joe Albert recalled that Newton had seemed very happy and had repeatedly asked, “ ‘Did I kill him? Is he dead?’ ” Newton also said, “[I]f he is not dead, I hope he is going to be a vegetable.”
And the murderer had it too hard, huh?

This event is also YET ANOTHER justification for capital punishment, besides the deterrent effects. Not only do I not trust death penalty opponents when they claim that they will "lock murderers up and throw away the key" instead, but what do you do when the lifer murders, or even maims or disfigures or severely brutalizes, other inmates or guards? Sentence him to another life term?

Thanks, to "Dead Man Eating".

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