Florida executes man using new drug in lethal injection
A 53-YEAR-OLD man convicted of killing two men in 1987 was executed by Florida on Thursday evening by lethal injection that included a drug never before used in a US execution, state officials said.
The execution was carried out at 6.22pm at the Florida State Prison in Bradford County, about 80km southwest of Jacksonville, where the murders took place.
Mark James Asay was the first white man to be put to death in Florida for killing a black man since the state reinstated the death penalty in 1979.
Asay was sentenced to death in 1988 for killing two men in separate incidents on the same day a year earlier. After using a racial slur during an argument, Asay shot Rob- ert Lee Booker in the belly. He killed Robert McDowell by shooting him multiple times in the chest. Asay said later he believed McDowell had cheated him out of $10.
Booker was black and McDowell was white.
Asay’s last meal had consisted of his requested fried ham, fried pork chops, french fries, vanilla swirl ice cream and a can of Coca-Cola, Florida Department of Corrections spokeswoman Ashley Cook said.
Florida prison officials said the drug etomidate had been used in Asay’s execution. Etomidate, an anesthesia, replaced midazolam, which Pfizer Inc stopped making last year to keep it from being used in executions. – Reuters