Those who were present at the execution of a prisoner were taken aback by the shocking last comments made by him just before he was executed.
Reports indicate that Kenneth, then 38 years old, escaped from a maximum-security prison in 1999 after spending less than a month behind bars for the murder of Dominique, then 19 years old, who was a college cheerleader. Kenneth was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the 1998 murder of Dominique.
He then murdered Cecil, 57, at his farmhouse, shooting him numerous times, before stealing Cecil’s pickup truck to flee to another state, where he slammed his vehicle into one driven by delivery man Michael, 24, killing him.
The state’s supply of a sedative used in lethal injections was about to run out, so four inmates were executed in just eight days. Kenneth was the fourth of eight inmates set to be executed before the supply ran out.
Cecil’s daughter, Jodie, watched from the death chamber as Kenneth was executed. She said that while the execution will not bring closure to her family, it does help some.
“Every time we drive down this road, he’s not here anymore,” Jodie said of Kenneth.
Kenneth’s final words were surprising to some, as he appeared to show remorse for his actions.
“I am not the person that I was, but I have been transformed since I gave my life to Christ. I can’t undo it. I only seek your forgiveness. I was more than wrong,” Kenneth said. “The crime I perpetrated against you all was senseless.”
“If it is my fate to die on a crucifixion-cross-shaped execution table, my final words here on earth will be spoken to God above while the ADC work to put my body to death beneath,” Kenneth added.
At 11:05 p.m. on April 27, Kenneth died by lethal injection. According to multiple news outlets, Kenneth’s attorney demanded an investigation after the inmate reportedly convulsed during his execution, which was described as “horrifying.”
“This is the most I’ve seen an inmate move three or four minutes in,” said reporter Kelly, who witnessed his 10th execution.
Kelly said that Kenneth “lurched” about 15 times quickly, followed by another five slower lurches, three minutes after he was given the sedative midazolam.
“This is very disturbing, but not at all surprising, given the history of the risky sedative midazolam, which has been used in many botched executions,” said Kenneth’s attorney, Shawn.
Shawn added: “What’s important right now is that all the information about tonight’s execution must be meticulously documented and preserved so that we can discover exactly what happened in that execution chamber.”
Critics of the death penalty have argued that midozolam should not be used in executions because it is a sedative and not an anesthetic. They argued that the condemned would feel severe pain from the sedative during the execution. Some have noted that midazolam has contributed to a number of botched executions in the past.