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Execution Of Clayton Lockett Botched; Charles Warner Granted Stay By Fallin, DOC Director

Matt Trotter
Public Radio Tulsa
Corrections Director Robert Patton addresses reporters Tuesday after a failed attempt to execute convicted murderer Clayton Lockett.

Oklahoma's execution of convicted murderer Clayton Lockett has failed. 

Corrections Director Robert Patton attributed it to a "vein failure" that prevented the chemicals from making into his system properly. 

In a statement shortly before 7:30 p.m., Patton said Lockett died of a "massive heart attack" at 7:06 p.m.

Prison officials began the execution at 6:23 p.m. Lockett declined the chance to make a final statement, and the first injection — Midazolam, to render him unconscious — was pushed into his IV.

Over the next seven minutes, Lockett's blinking slowed to a stop. A doctor checked Lockett just before 6:31 p.m. but declared he was not yet unconscious.

At 6:33 p.m., the doctor declared Lockett unconscious. Within a minute, however, his mouth twisted to the left. 

Three minutes later, at 6:33 p.m., Lockett began moving and mumbling.

"I don't wanna," Lockett said, trailing off after that.

For the next three minutes and 22 seconds, Lockett writhed on the table, pushing against his restraints and breathing heavily. At one point he lifted his head and shoulders from the table. He also continued to mumble, most of it impossible to make out.

"Oh, man," Lockett said at one point.

At 6:39 p.m., prison officials announced they were lowering the screens on the execution chamber windows. They cut the microphone inside the chamber, and the doctor was at Lockett's right side as the screens went down, checking under the white sheet covering Lockett from chin to toes.

After several minutes on the phone in the hallway outside, Patton re-entered to announce he was stopping the execution and, under his authority, issuing a stay for Charles Warner's, which was scheduled for 8 p.m.

Warner's stay is for 14 days. In a statement, Gov. Mary Fallin said she asked the Department of Corrections to conduct a full review. She also issued an executive order for Warner's stay.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.
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