Monday, May 9, 2011

R.I.P. Jeffrey Motts

Roman Colosseum lit to protest an execution
On May 6, 2011, South Carolina executed Jeffrey Motts for the 2005 murder of his cellmate, Charles Martin, at Perry Correctional Institution in Greenville County, South Carolina.  Motts was serving time for the 1997 murders of two relatives.  The South Carolina Supreme Court found him mentally competent to make the decision to allow the state execute him without considering any challenges to the fairness of his trial.  Motts had sought to waive all his appeals after being sentenced to death.

The state used a new combination of lethal drugs, including pentobarbital, after the DEA seized South Carolina's supply of sodium thiopental (along with Georgia and Kentucky's supplies) because it was improperly obtained from overseas. A reporter who had witnessed previous executions observed that the new drug was slower acting, and that Motts "appeared to bob up and down after about 30 seconds and his breathing eventually became more shallow and his blinking less frequent until there appeared to be no breathing after about 90 seconds."

This is the 14th execution in the United States in 2011, the first in South Carolina.


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