Missing pregnant Shannon Watts and her two daughter's bodies found, husband arrested
Join the latest discussion

OK - Stephanie Neiman, 19, killed, 2 injured in Perry home Invasion, 3 June 1999

Discussion in 'Past Trial Discussion Threads' started by wfgodot, Oct 14, 2014.

  1. wfgodot

    wfgodot Former Member

    Messages:
    30,163
    Likes Received:
    29
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Family of inmate in botched Oklahoma execution plans to sue governor, executioners (Daily Oklahoman)

    • The family of Clayton Derrell Lockett, whose bungled execution in April pushed Oklahoma to the forefront of a national debate over the death penalty, plans to sue Gov. Mary Fallin and various members of the state’s execution team, claiming Lockett’s lethal injection violated his civil rights.

    the rest at link above
     
  2. wfgodot

    wfgodot Former Member

    Messages:
    30,163
    Likes Received:
    29
    Trophy Points:
    0
    the rest at link below

    Lawsuit names McAlester ER physician as execution doctor (Tulsa World)

    "First, do no harm," eh.
     
  3. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    I strongly disagree with this whole lawsuit. I don't think the families of the condemned should be able to sue the governor and prison officials over the execution. What's next-- will they sue because there's no crash cart or fully outfitted trauma bay in the execution chamber?

    I don't think things went as smoothly as they should have, but it has bothered me for a long time that this execution is persistently described as "botched". The condemned man was dead within 43 minutes-- that was the goal of the judicial execution. "Botched" would be the condemned man still alive and in a coma or vegetative state, at state expense, for years on end. IMO.

    It was unfortunate that the IV infiltrated, and wasn't detected and handled as expeditiously as it could have been. Versed alone isn't probably the "best" drug to achieve the goal of execution, but it will definitely work, given a big enough dose IV.

    Maybe we should put surgically placed central lines in all condemned inmates, to be sure the IV won't malfunction?

    There are a LOT of drugs, and a LOT of "medical" methods to achieve an overdose and and an executed and dead inmate. If we have decided as a state and a country to administer judicial executions by lethal injection, we have to accept that sometimes the IV will infiltrate.

    Let's not forget he brutally killed a 19 year old young woman. Should HER family get to counter sue the killer's family if they "win" a cash windfall of millions of dollars in their lawsuit? Shouldn't the VICTIM's family be compensated for her murder? SMH.

    Here is what Clayton Lockett did to Stephanie Neiman, just 19 years old.

    http://www.news9.com/story/25392928...e-neiman-oklahoma-murder-victims-tragic-story
     
  4. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    BBM. So, Oklahoma did not use a single drug (midazolam) protocol. They were using their "Chart D: 3 drug protocol". (Attachment D, to the main execution policy and procedure.)

    http://www.ok.gov/doc/documents/040301ad.pdf

    Here is Oklahoma's updated execution policy & procedure. Right on the front page of their DOC website, for easy access for the public.

    http://www.ok.gov/doc/

    http://www.ok.gov/doc/documents/op040301.pdf


    And while the IV catheter was leaking or infiltrated, clearly most of the drugs ended up being infused intravenously-- because extravasated vec and potassium wouldn't "work" in the SQ tissues. Tox reports measure drugs in the central circulation. So things didn't go smoothly, but the drugs did make it into the central circulation, as intended, and did execute him.

    I hope this lawsuit (due to be filed next Tuesday, per the article) is thrown out and never sees a courtroom or a jury. This is just the volley of publicity before the filing. Just sick and sad. The mother of the killer files a lawsuit for money from the state, and the parents of the real victim, Stephanie Nieman, lost their only daughter.

    If Lockett's relatives get a single penny, I hope Stephanie's parents sue them. Or if Lockett's mother has any morality or decency, she'd give any money she gets from this lawsuit to Stephanie's parents herself. This whole thing makes me sick.
     
  5. Supernovae

    Supernovae Active Member

    Messages:
    650
    Likes Received:
    53
    Trophy Points:
    28
  6. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Warning- graphic content. (And double warning—this is gonna be a longish post. Sorry in advance!)

    This op-ed referred to contains a number of ethical/ moral dilemmas/ debates—should we debate the death penalty itself, versus how it is conducted, and who is involved? In this post, I’m choosing to focus mostly on HOW it is conducted. (The other debate issues are equally lengthy.)

    First of all, I will start out with a disclaimer that like roughly 65% of Americans, I do support the death penalty for the “worse of the worst” murderers. And having said that, I also support a variety of methods to achieve rapid, efficient, effective, inexpensive, and relatively painless execution for the condemned.

    There are a number of highly effective methods to produce a quick, inexpensive, and relatively painless execution for the condemned. The cheapest and most reliable are less “acceptable” to most supporters, in this new era of “sterile, bloodless, painless judicial executions.” And here I’m referring to firing squad, gas chamber, and definitive and instantaneous methods such as guillotine beheading. Those are extremely fast, highly reliable, and rely less on commercial suppliers that may become unsupportive of judicial execution. But they are messy, and some believe these methods are “barbaric”, so we search for a politically and socially acceptable method that doesn’t offend the delicate sensibilities of some death penalty supporters. And because of THAT, we as a nation (ok, well, state by state) have decided that the “most acceptable” method of judicial execution is “massive and rapid anesthetic drug overdose”, similar to the medical induction of general anesthesia—but with a vastly different goals and outcomes. (And NOT administered by expert and skilled anesthetic providers, due to ethical concerns.)

    Our current debate and controversy is focused on unavailability of the drugs (called euphemistically “chemicals” in most state execution protocols.) This unavailability is most often due to the desired drugs being rather old fashioned and not in demand for ordinary medical procedures (such as sodium pentothal), as well as drug unavailability due to politico/ ethical debates about the morality of judicial execution. One of the most potentially effective execution drugs, propofol, is essentially “off limits” for discussion, due to the chronic shortage of this very effective drug for ordinary medical and surgical procedures (which is also the “Michael Jackson death drug”).

    Most medical providers balk at the idea of propofol having any place in judicial executions, because that would increase the shortage of this expensive, but effective and ubiquitous anesthetic drug even further. Propofol is a highly efficient cardiovascular depressant in large enough doses, as well as producing unconsciousness rapidly and reliably. But it’s expensive, and in limited supply for “real” patients, so we don’t want to “waste” it on judicial executions. Or make it any more “controversial” a drug than it already is, thanks to Michael Jackson and Dr. Conrad Murray.

    So, let’s pretend for a minute that money is no barrier. The “original” lethal injection combination was pentothal, pavulon, and potassium chloride—cheap, and highly effective in appropriate doses. . That same combination in 2015 dollars is still ridiculously cheap—pennies, if all the drugs are available (which we know they aren’t). What happened over the years is that pentothal and pavulon were replaced in anesthetic usage with “better” new drugs. More expensive, newer drugs, for sure, but the older drugs (pavulon and pentothal) had fewer and fewer “real” medical applications.

    So, over decades, manufacturers noticed that pretty much the only ones buying large quantities of these older drugs were corrections systems, and because of the ethical controversy over judicial execution, they decided to stop making them. And then the situation was compounded by judicial execution protocols being written into state laws, which guaranteed that the process to “change” the protocols to incorporate new drugs would be lengthy and cumbersome. And that’s where we are today.

    Lots of drugs delivered in various routes and combinations (inhalation, IV, IM, etc) will “work” to produce a “humane” judicial execution/ overwhelming anesthetic drug overdose/ rapid unconsciousness with rapid cardiovascular collapse. But every state that has the death penalty is struggling to decide just the “very best” way to quickly and effectively (and painlessly, and reliably) effect unconsciousness, as well as rapid cardiovascular collapse, without “offending” the sensibilities of many supporters, who don’t want to see or hear about “blood”, or bullets, or beheadings, or lethal injection executions that produce gasping or writhing. While still choosing drugs that are easily available in large quantities.

    Interestingly, the debate over “dumping” muscle relaxants (paralyzing drugs) from execution protocols is EXACTLY the same debate we have been having for years in anesthesia about doses and how often to re-paralyze patients undergoing lengthy procedures. At the beginning of my training and career, each and every general anesthesia patient was paralyzed “fully” from induction to the last hour or so of the case, and “reversal” drugs for paralyzing drugs was commonplace. This was to ensure that the patient “never” bucked or moved during the procedure—and because sometimes multiple anesthetic providers would rotate in and out of a case in a big hospital—and it was easier to keep the patient “fully” paralyzed. But as reports of “anesthetic awareness” began to pile up—patients who were paralyzed, but awake, as a profession, we began to more closely examine the necessity and safety of routinely re-paralyzing patients, and changed our practices as a profession.

    So, should non-depolarizing muscle relaxants have a part in judicial executions? I don’t honestly know that the general public is ready for that level of discussion. As an anesthetic professional, I have no problem with the use of paralytics, given in the “proper overwhelming overdosage”, and via a reliable route, in combination with other drugs such as barbiturates and benzodiazepines, to be “humane”. The “back up” IM protocols I’ve looked at are very worrisome, and I wonder how much expert input has been given to those, because my first year anesthesia students could come up with “better” protocols than those that are mandated in some state laws.

    Should docs and nurses be involved with placing access IV lines and monitoring the process? I’m okay with that. Quite frankly, a properly placed CENTRAL IV access line would be the ideal, but I doubt that is going to happen in any state anytime soon.

    As I’ve said before, if we as a state/ nation are going to administer judicial execution by lethal injection , there will be a number of executions that are “sub optimal”. That is just part of the deal. Nothing is 100% all the time. But I believe it is of benefit to society, as well as the condemned, that we talk frankly about HOW we will be going about delivering judicial execution.
     
  7. Supernovae

    Supernovae Active Member

    Messages:
    650
    Likes Received:
    53
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Whats your opinion on Nitrogen/CO chambers? Some people say that would be the most humane method of execution.
     
  8. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    I was a military flight nurse for many years, so I have more than a passing familiarity with issues related to partial pressure of oxygen, and time of useful consciousness in high altitude decompressions, in addition to my anesthesia background. (And my kids and their friends love to suck helium from balloons, so I regale them with stories of gas embolisms and hypoxic asphyxiation to scare them from doing helium too much! See what happens when your parents are science nerds?!)

    So, what you’re referring to is “inert gas asphyxiation”. CO is carbon monoxide, and I don’t think it would ever be seriously considered as an execution method (it’s too slow). CO2, carbon dioxide, I think, would cause too much physiological distress to be seriously considered as an execution method for humans, but has been used for lab animals like rats.

    However, nitrogen asphyxiation for judicial execution has been briefly discussed off and on since the mid 1990's. Oklahoma is currently in the infancy of discussions about looking into this method, after the prolonged Clayton Lockett execution.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Latest...-little-to-aid-anti-death-penalty-cause-video

    I was surprised to find a wiki entry for inert gas asphyxiation, that has a really good explanation, as well as references at the end. It’s been used in the meat processing/ humane slaughter on a small scale, apparently.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inert_gas_asphyxiation

    A few more references:

    https://veenga.wordpress.com/2014/09/16/nitrogen-gas-for-executions/

    This one is the "think tank" proponent for nitrogen asphyxiation execution methods:

    http://www.gistprobono.org/ihhp/id1.html

    http://web.archive.org/web/20070203...ety_publications/docs/SB-Nitrogen-6-11-03.pdf

    http://videosift.com/video/How-to-Kill-a-Human-Being-in-search-of-a-painless-death (oops-- the video doesn't work on this link, but I'll leave it in case someone else can find another working version.)

    While I think inert gas asphyxiation could be a very humane, painless, and rapid method of execution, I would forsee at least 10-20 years of very strident debate in the media and state legislatures before it could be seriously considered for implementation within a state department of corrections for judicial execution.

    First, the description of the method includes the words “gas” and “asphyxiation”, two words that are LOADED with emotional and political meaning, and could even evoke comparisons to Nazi extermination camps by activists trying to abolish the death penalty. Contrast that with “lethal injection”, which most people compare to drifting off to anesthetic sleep for surgical procedures, or euthanizing a beloved pet. Surgery is something we do to living people for humane and curative purposes, so the subtle implication is that anesthesia must be painless and humane, or we wouldn’t commonly anesthetize regular, non-condemned people.

    Mostly, I think people, even supporters, want to forget that we are actually killing someone with lethal injection. I think a lot of people don’t want to think about it too deeply or too long, and just consider that the condemned inmate is just “going to sleep” for a looooong time, like when we compassionately euthanize our beloved pets. (In the same way most people, IMO, don’t like to think of the meat in the Styrofoam tray at the grocery store as coming from a once- living animal—once it’s on Styrofoam, it’s just “dinner”.) Asphyxiation, on the other hand, is associated with terrible accidents, suicides, and murders, like the Nazi atrocities. So, for that reason alone, I think it would be an uphill battle to present this method of execution to the public as desirable and humane. I don't know if the average person would understand the difference between gas poisoning, versus inert gas asphyxiation, or would associate "asphyxiation" with "suffocation".

    And then there’s the practical discussion of “how” to do it, whether by mask delivery, flooded room, flooded small box-like chamber, with or without pre- delivered sedation, etc. (It could take up to a minute or so for unconsciousness, which is actually a very long time, and could be distressing for observers. With general anesthesia and properly applied judicial lethal injection, unconsciousness usually takes only about 10 seconds.)

    And on top of all that, then there would be numerous mechanical considerations, engineering designs, and OSHA and other safety issues for the corrections department and staff.

    It could definitely work, but I think there are just too many political and practical issues to overcome to realistically implement this in the U.S. in the next 20 years. Perhaps if the meat packing industry embraces this on a larger scale for humane slaughter of large animals like cows and pigs, they will do a lot of the research on delivery methods and industrial safety, which could jump start a public discussion on the matter.

    And who knows— the death penalty could be abolished again in the U.S., with the proper proportion of anti- death penalty leaning justices on the Supreme Court. So for now, if we’re going to do this thing called “lethal injection” for judicial execution, my opinion is that we should carefully study the issue and do it the best, fastest, and most humane way we can. I’d personally like to see a national “think tank” coalition be formed of experts to study the issues and make recommendations in support of various methods of judicial execution, just like the Death Penalty Information Center does for anti-DP issues. What troubles me personally is the wide discrepancy between how each of the participating states have developed their individual protocols and statutory language. There should be more uniformity, IMO. (And for the record, I currently live in a non-death penalty state, but I have lived in other states and countries where judicial execution was practiced.)
     
  9. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    I had one last thought I forgot to put in my above post. (Lol-- I always have "another" thought!)

    I think the optimistic idea of "2 breaths to unconsciousness" is wildly overselling the realities of pulmonary physiology and potential nitrogen asphyxiation execution delivery devices. (That is, unless the condemned inmate has very significant, end stage lung disease, which isn't likely.)

    I think the realities of circulation and loading/ unloading oxygen (oxyhemoglobin dissociation curve) at the hemoglobin level in the blood and tissues, combined with expiratory reserve volume, as well as functional residual capacity, and displaced dead space O2 reserves in most 30-60 year old execution candidates, in addition to the "ramp up" delivery device (whether flooding a room or chamber, or mask delivery), would make for at least 30-60 seconds, or more, from initiation to unconsciousness, then another 4-10 min for cardiac arrest. We also know that length of time is likely, when we look at what happened in fatal industrial accidents involving nitrogen asphyxiation.

    Brief explanation of FRC, ERV, and oxyhemoglobin dissociation curve physiology.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lung_volumes

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Functional_residual_capacity

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxygen–haemoglobin_dissociation_curve
     
  10. Paulette

    Paulette Active Member

    Messages:
    2,051
    Likes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    38
    When I read what the perps have done to their victims, I'm overcome with a murderous rage. Yes, I could be one in the firing squad or put the noose around their neck & pull the chair out from under them. We have gone over the top with "humane treatment" for these murderous beasts. Any form of humane treatment is too much of a consideration & leaves the public with a bad taste in their mouths.
     
  11. PrairieWind

    PrairieWind Verified Attorney

    Messages:
    1,967
    Likes Received:
    58
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Very good information, K_Z. Thanks. I don't know if the asphyxiation concept will politically be acceptable in this country or not. I think the idea of sending prisoners to "the gas chambers" creates such an uneasiness in even supporters of capital punishment that I don't know if it will be supported. I agree with you that the simple mechanics and logistics of carrying out such executions would be very probematic and subject to delay and court challenge. And of course the idea of sedating a prisoner beforehand runs into the same problems faced today with lethal injection and what drug is effective to do that and is it available. Although, the "availability" problem appears to at least for the time being been solved by the use of compounding pharmacies. I do know that there are several state legislatures that are, or will be, discussing DP options, including re-authorizing firing squads. I would disagree with you about having a "national think tank" to come up with procedures and processes. I actually think that States developing their own protocols and methods is a better way to ensure executions are consistently carried out. The States carry out the overwhelming number of executions, and as such, should be deciding what best works for them.
     
  12. Supernovae

    Supernovae Active Member

    Messages:
    650
    Likes Received:
    53
    Trophy Points:
    28
  13. oh_gal

    oh_gal Active Member

    Messages:
    5,939
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    38
    This world has gone flipping crazy!
    It's not as if this person were an innocent victim. But for his actions, none of us would be here, typing or reading.
     
  14. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Thank you for finding a link to the documentary that works!
     
  15. 1&2&3

    1&2&3 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,936
    Likes Received:
    1,064
    Trophy Points:
    113
    After reading this, the case of Jessica Chambers immediately comes to mind (the girl who was set on fire alive in Dec).

    The person(s) responsible for this heinous act does not have a right to be treated humanely! IMO. Why should they be babied and feel no pain if lethal injection is given to them? IMO
     
  16. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    You are not the only one to have these strong feelings. There is endless debate about whether the death penalty is revenge/ retribution, or justice for the actions of the convicted murderers.

    If you watch the last of the 6 parts on youtube (10 min each) of Michael Portillo's documentary (which is now 20 years old) linked in post #12, at the end he interviews a prominent death penalty activist, and asks his opinion about the inert gas/ nitrogen asphyxiation procedure that is proposed. The activist doesn't like it at all-- it's not painful or unpleasant enough for the condemned. He doesn't want the condemned's last moments to be euphoric-- he wants them to suffer fully aware as they die, as retribution for the life/ lives they brutally took.

    As I said in a previous post, I'm a supporter of the death penalty. But frankly, I don't care at all if the condemned experiences euphoria in their last moments. I'm a pragmatist-- the end result is the same, an executed murderer.

    It's a very good method, IMO, terminal hypoxia induced by inert gas-- far better than lethal injection in a lot of ways. It's a shame it would be so difficult (IMO) to debate and implement, because it's cheap, fast, relatively easy, and does not require medical professionals to assist, among other advantages. It does have a certain false-pleasant "science fictiony" bent to it, rather reminiscent of the forced Carousel exits in the old movie Logan's Run, among other dystopian adventures. And it does solve the issues of "gruesome-ness" of other methods, such as guillotine beheading, firing squads, electrocution, and hanging.

    It will be interesting to see if the discussion in Oklahoma about nitrogen asphyxiation introduced by the Republican lead House (post #8 above) goes anywhere. It's good that at least the conversation was started, I suppose. That's progress, IMO.
     
  17. Nova

    Nova Active Member

    Messages:
    19,111
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    K_Z, as a member of the 35% who oppose the d.p. under any circumstances, I want to thank you specially for your very informative posts.

    And, no, IMHO your posts are not at all too long. When one has a lot of information (and has given the matter a great deal of thought), we should only expect a few long posts to summarize that knowledge. Your ability to explain the science and your own thinking is considerable.
     
  18. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Bringing the discussion back to the original topic-- the lawsuit filed in Oklaoma by the family of Clayton Lockett.

    I was an officer in the military for many years, both active duty and reserves (17-ish years). Members of the military are precluded from suing the government for a variety of issues related to their service. IMO, if that's "just enough" for members of the military who serve and fight to defend every citizen's rights and freedoms, then it's "just enough" to extend that to the families of criminals who are executed, as a result of breaking laws and brutally murdering other citizens.

    What I'd like to see introduced in the Oklahoma legislature, as a direct result of the lawsuit of the family of Clayton Lockett, is legislation that would preclude families of the condemned from civilly suing State government officials and Correctional departments for actions arising from carrying out the sentence of death.

    I do not believe the families of the condemned should have any legal standing to bring any lawsuits related to the incarceration and imposition of sentence of the convicted criminal inmate. Should the families of the murdered be able to sue the Governor and State officials for failing to prevent the murder of their loved ones?

    These families of the exeuted have not been burdened with anything that requires "financial compensation" from a civil judgment, IMO-- and it's beyond offensive, really, that a lawsuit such as this one should be given the dignity of moving it thru the system to try to get them some kind of windfall of cash for the family of a brutal murderer.

    If that were to be introduced in the OK legislature, I think it would have a much better chance of passage in one or two sessions of debate than a whole new method of execution. In fact, I think the general public would be so outraged that it might just fly thru the legislature, and there would be no further lawsuits from the families of executed criminals.
     
  19. Supernovae

    Supernovae Active Member

    Messages:
    650
    Likes Received:
    53
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Actually, it's 7 years, almost to the day:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7183957.stm
     
  20. K_Z

    K_Z Verified Anesthetist

    Messages:
    6,389
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    38
    My apologies for my error! For some reason, 1995 stuck in my head as the production date, and I didn't confirm that.
     

Share This Page



  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice