Medics botch killer’s execution
The execution of a convicted killer from Puerto Rico took 34 minutes – twice as long as normal – because officials botched the insertion of the needles that delivered the lethal chemicals, a medical examiner said today.
Dr William Hamilton, who performed the autopsy in Florida, said the needles pierced Angel Nieves Diaz’s veins and then went into soft tissue in his arms.
“More likely than not, the perforation of the veins occurred very early in this process,” Hamilton said. “The autopsy findings were different than any other lethal injections.”
Hamilton also said although there were records that Diaz had hepatitis, his liver appeared normal. State corrections officials said after Wednesday’s execution that Diaz had liver disease, which caused him to metabolise the lethal drugs more slowly.
Governor Jeb Bush’s office said he learned of the medical examiner’s preliminary findings and has since issued an executive order creating a commission “to review the method in which the lethal injection protocols are administered by the Department of Corrections.”