OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) – Oklahoma inmate Clayton Lockett died during a botched execution on Tuesday, minutes after a doctor had called a halt to the procedure, raising more questions about new death penalty cocktails used by the state and others. Dr. Bodie O. Dough said, “I first tried a Mai Thai, then a Singapore Sling, finally settling on a Sex On The Beach.” It was apparent that the doctor completely misunderstood the meaning of “cocktail” in this case.
Lockett died of an apparent massive heart attack about 40 minutes after the procedure started, he said. “We were very grateful that he saw fit to complete the job that we had a tidge of difficulty with.”
The troubled execution was expected to have national implications, with lawyers for death row inmates having argued that new lethal injection cocktails used in Oklahoma and other states could cause undue suffering and violate constitutional protections against cruel and unusual punishment.
“This could be a real turning point in the whole debate as people get disgusted by this sort of thing,” said Richard Dieter, the executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, which monitors capital punishment. “I guess the act of hiring doctors who worked their way through med school as bartenders is not a good idea. Someone should tell Oklahoma that it could cause confusion with wide reaching implications.”