Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Peanut Butter and Jail-y

Paul Augustus Howell was executed tonight by the state of Florida for his part in the death of a highway trooper. Howell was a drug trafficker who built a pipe bomb to kill two murder witnesses, but a Florida trooper was killed instead when he pulled the car containing the pipe bomb over during a routine traffic stop.

I can think of many reasons why Howell should have ordered an exceptional last meal prior to his demise. First, he was convicted in the state that serves the finest last meals in the country. Steak, lobster, fancy desserts--they're all available if your rendezvous with the Grim Reaper happens to take place in the Sunshine State. Second, Howell's middle name was Augustus, just like the first emperor of Rome. At the very least, he should've ordered a Caesar salad. Third, Howell was of Jamaican ancestry. I'm sure those talented Florida prison chefs could've whipped up some jerk chicken, oxtail soup, or something else with a little Caribbean flair.

But instead of choosing any of those options for his last meal, Paul Howell asked for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. The lowest item on the culinary food chain, something that would barely raise the excitement level of your average kindergarten student. And Howell's choice begs another question as well; how do you utter your last words when your tongue is stuck to the roof of your mouth? Only Howell knows, and at this point, he's not talking.

No Soup for You, Michael Anthony Taylor

Movie fans around the world were stunned this morning to learn that the state of Missouri has executed one of the stars of such classic teen films as Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club.

Uh, wait. Scratch that. We’re being told that man’s name is Anthony Michael Hall.

Take two.

Music fans around the world were stunned this morning to learn that the state of Missouri has executed the former bass player for the rock group Van Halen.

Uh, wait. Scratch that. We’re being told that man’s name is Michael Anthony.

Take three.

Fans of justice were pleased to learn that the state of Missouri has executed Michael Anthony Taylor for his part in the brutal kidnap, rape, and murder of a teenage girl in 1989. Taylor had no last words, and also didn’t request a special last meal. He was served potato soup and a sandwich.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Fiendish Florida Felon Has Final Fruit Feast

First, convicted killer Juan Carlos Chavez’s veins were filled with fructose. Then, just a few hours later, those same veins were filled with midazolam hydrochloride, vecuronium bromide, and potassium chloride.

Chavez earned his death sentence for a kidnap, rape, and murder in 1995. This well-deserved and long-overdue execution was carried out tonight by the state of Florida using a new three-drug lethal injection cocktail.

Prior to his execution, Juan Carlos Chavez ate a last meal of ribeye steak, French fries, a mix of mangoes, bananas, and papaya, strawberry ice cream, and mango juice.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Was Basso Batty or Just Plain Bad?

Lawyers for Suzanne Basso, executed tonight by the state of Texas, tried to save their client with last-minute appeals that claimed the woman was mentally unsound. Over the years, Basso did all she could to foster that belief. She spoke in strange voices in court, and also claimed to be blind and paralyzed. She once accused a prison nurse of trying to kill her by smuggling a deadly snake into her hospital room inside a book about Roy Rogers. Basso also told people that she was a triplet, that she had once worked for New York's governor, and that she and Nelson Rockefeller had been romantically involved.

So those "mentally unsound" claims might have some merit after all.

What's undisputed, however, is that Basso killed a man named Louis Musso as part of a plot to steal his insurance money and social security benefits. (Can you imagine if she had strangled him with one of those cowboy ropes and committed the crime at one of the gas stations owned by Exxon? The headline would've read "Basso Kills Musso with Lasso at Esso.")

Since Texas no longer allows special last meal requests, executed inmates are fed the same food as everyone else in their unit. For her last meal, Suzanne Basso had baked chicken, fish, boiled eggs, carrots, green beans, and sliced bread.