|Roman Colosseum lit to protest an execution|
Stemple's family unsuccessfully sought to have new evidence that undermines Hunt's account of the attack presented in court. Hunt had testified that he hit the victim twice with a baseball bat and that Stemple hit her 20-30 times, and then ran over her with a pickup truck. The brutality of the crime was critical in obtaining a death sentence. However, the findings of a forensic expert consulted by Stemple's family support the theory that the victim died from an auto-pedestrian collision, not from blunt force trauma to the head -- that she was struck with a vehicle and run over, but not beaten. Another expert, a forensic animation specialist who reconstructed the crime, agrees with the forensic expert's conclusions.
The Pardon and Parole Board denied the plea for clemency, and Governor Mary Fallin denied a request for a stay to allow the forensic testimony to be heard in court.
The New York Times reported that the Innocence Project also urged the Governor to stay the execution and called for additional DNA testing to be done. "Human blood was found on the plastic that was on the bat," and according to the prosecution it was "too deteriorated to determine whose it was." The Times said that Stemple's "family hoped advances in DNA testing could help exonerate him."
This is the ninth execution in the United States in 2012, the second in Oklahoma.