Wednesday, June 18, 2014

No Dinner, Just Cocktails, for John Henry

Loss of appetite has suddenly become an epidemic among America's death row denizens; for the second time today, an inmate refused to order a special last meal before his execution. This time the non-peckish felon was John Ruthell Henry, executed by the state of Florida for killing two of his wives and also a child. 

Henry obviously didn't know what he was missing; as our readers know, Florida serves up one of the tastiest--and most generous--last meals in the whole country. Steak, lobster, and other succulent dishes can all be ordered with impunity. But instead of a meal, Henry just had a cocktail; midazolam, vecuronium bromide, and potassium chloride, to be exact. 

It's a Last Meal Loss for Winfield

Convicted killer John Winfield, who earned his death sentence for a double murder back in 1996, lost more than his life today when he was executed by the state of Missouri; he also lost his last chance in 18 years to eat a decent meal. In other words, it was a lose-lose situation for Winfield.

Missouri offers one of the better last meal experiences in our nation's penal system; just this year, Missouri inmates have ordered steak, barbecued ribs, apple pie, chocolate cake, and other tasty items prior to their executions. But John Winfield said "thanks but no thanks" to the offer, ordering nothing at all.

No Yellin' for Felon Wellons

Some inmates swear, complain, and throw a big fit just before their execution, but not Marcus Wellons. The Georgia inmate convicted of rape and murder back in 1993 went to his execution calmly last night, asking for forgiveness prior to his lethal injection. The execution itself went smoothly too, despite a series of recent legal snags.

The first came in 2010, when the US Supreme Court ordered a special hearing to discuss Wellons' case. The reason? They had learned that during the trial back in 1993, one of the jurors presented the judge with a chocolate penis as a gift. The court eventually ruled that although this was a "tasteless" act, it played no part in the conviction of Wellons.

Another snag came last night, as Wellons' lawyers tried for a last-minute appeal based on the fact that Georgia had not disclosed the name of the company that manufactures the drugs now used in their lethal injections--which, from a common sense standpoint, is like demanding to know the license plate number of the truck that's about to plow into you. The appeal failed, however, and Wellons was put to death shortly before midnight.

Wellons did not choose a special last meal, so he was given the same food as everyone else in his unit: shepherd's pie, mashed potatoes, red beans, cabbage relish salad, corn bread, sugar cookies, and fruit punch.