(Stephen B. Thornton/The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette via AP).
Ledell Lee was executed on April 21, while Jack Harold Jones and Marcel Wayne Williams were both executed on April 24. Witnessed by AP writer Kelly Kissel. A motorist passes by the entrance to the Cummins Unit prison near Varner, Ark., on Thursday, April 27, 2017.
Kenneth Williams, who killed four different people, was executed late Thursday night and pronounced dead at 11:05 p.m. after hours of delay.
Had Arkansas carried out the eight executions in 11 days, it would have become an unprecedented phenomenon with so many people been put to death in such a compressed time frame. That's where condemned inmate Kenneth Williams lurched and convulsed 20 times during a lethal injection execution Thursday that began with midazolam.
On Thursday, Arkansas completed its fourth execution of the month, yet another urgent slaughter which is directly related to the state's soon-to-be expired supply of drugs used in lethal injections.
"Me and Jasmine, we immediately connected. she didn't have to explain her feelings because I already knew", Greenwood said.
His attorney noted the reports of Williams' reactions to the injection and called for an investigation to see if the execution was "botched". Davis said the four executions carried out over the eight-day period were "flawless".
Arkansas' execution protocol requires prison officials to dispose of any drugs that were prepared for an execution, but not used. He lurched violently against the leather chest restraint, then the rate slowed for a final five movements.
That's what Hutchinson concluded after he spoke with the Wendy Kelley, the director of the Arkansas Department of Correction, who was inside the death chamber watching Williams.
A total of 31 witnesses walked into the chamber's viewing room to watch Williams' execution. Williams' attorneys and the American Civil Liberties Union have called for a full investigation.
A spokesperson for Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson told reporters the state is working on getting a new batch of the drug.
Four of the eight inmates have been executed, but the courts have postponed the other four executions for various reasons.
His lawyers unsuccessfully petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court for a stay, saying the inmate should not be executed because three health care professionals had determined he was "intellectually disabled".
The four lethal injections that were carried out included Monday's first double execution in the United States since 2000.
Midazolam is supposed to render inmates unconscious but critics say it has failed in some cases, leaving them to feel the effects of a paralytic that halts breathing and another drug that stops the heart while causing an excruciating burning sensation.
"Having never seen an execution like this, it looked like something was wrong", said Fox 16 news anchor Donna Terrell, one of the three media witnesses. "The crime I perpetrated against you all was senseless", Williams said, according to CNN affiliate KATV.
Death penalty supporters have said some pain in executions is warranted given the brutality of the murders the condemned typically commit and the harm they have inflicted on victim's families.
"I saw an efficient, effective execution process", state Sen.
On October 3 of 1999, while serving his life sentence at the Cummins Unit of the state prison system in Lincoln County, Williams escaped by hiding in a hog slop-filled tank of a garbage truck. Only midazolam had been injected at that point, Kissel said. Deborah Denno, a law professor at Fordham University. "This incident validates that argument even more".
Williams' lawyers say he has sickle cell trait, lupus and brain damage, and that the combined maladies could subject him to an exceptionally painful execution in violation of the U.S. Constitution.
The state argued in a court filing Friday that there's no proof that Williams suffered.
The state's response also says: "The drugs worked as intended and planned". A federal judge dismissed a challenge to the night's second execution, saying Jones' execution did not appear to be "torturous and inhumane" in violation of constitutional standards.
Jodie Efird, the daughter of one of Williams' victims and a witness to the execution, said that "any kind of movement he had was far less than his victims".