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White supremacist Joseph Franklin is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon refused Monday to grant him clemency.
While serving time for three other murders, Franklin confessed to killing 42 year old Gerald Gordon in a sniper attack outside a Richmond Heights synagogue in 1977. It's the only murder for which he received the death penalty.
The condemned man spoke with Fox 2 News Monday. Franklin says he hasn't reached out to Gordon's wife, because he doesn't want to upset her. "But I would apologize to her right now," he said. "Tell her I'm sorry for the horrible crime that I committed and ask for her forgiveness."
Franklin admitted that he does deserve to die for his crime. He said he's in a completely different place now, mentally. He described himself as "indoctrinated" at the time of the murder. "My mind was just all messed up after having read a whole lot of Nazi literature."
In 1994 Major Rick Zweifel of the Richmond Heights Police Department took Franklin's confession. Zweifel says that Franklin expressed regret that he hadn't kill more people. "He's upset it's against the law," Zweifel said. "And when I questioned him about what do you mean it's against the law? He says killing Jews."
Franklin has exhausted his appeals, but has filed a lawsuit to stop his execution based on the method Missouri officials plan to employ.
If the lawsuit fails, Franklin's execution will be the first performed under Missouri's new drug protocol and the first in the state in three years.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Before Governor Jay Nixon halted a planned October execution, his office received numerous messages raising concerns about plans to use the common anesthetic propofol to administer the death penalty.
Nixon also directed state prison officials to develop a new death penalty protocol. The Department of Corrections announced this past week that Missouri now will use the sedative pentobarbital in executions.
The possible use of propofol for an execution had fueled concerns that the anti-death penalty European Union could limit its export.
Governor Jay Nixon says an execution scheduled for later this month, is postponed.
Nixon made the announcement today in response to recent controversy over the use of a new lethal injection drug. Missouri was prepared to execute Allen Nicklasson on October 23 and the state was going to use propofol. The use of the anesthetic drew criticism from the Missouri Society of Anesthesiologists and Europe threatened to cut off the supply of the drug to Missouri if used in executions.
Nixon says he instructed Attorney General Chris Koster to request a new date for Nicklasson's execution. Nixon also instructed the department of corrections to develop a new form of lethal injection.
Joseph Franklin is the next death row inmate set to be executed, on November 20.
Most of the Missouri Department of Corrections' supply of propofol is headed back to the Louisiana supplier. Supplier Morris and Dickson requested the drugs be returned a year ago and the state says they are complying with the request.
The state's plan to use the anesthetic for executions has come under fire of late. The vast majority of the drug is manufactured in Germany and the European Union is considering export controls if it is used in an execution.
It is unclear what effect the return will have on planned executions--the first scheduled for October 23. The Post-Dispatch reports that the state still has some propofol in stock.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A group representing Missouri anesthesiologists is urging the state to drop plans to use propofol in an upcoming execution, saying the fallout could jeopardize the availability of the anesthetic for thousands of U.S. hospitals and clinics that rely on it.
The Missouri Society of Anesthesiologists statement on Monday followed an Associated Press report last week citing possible European export controls if propofol is used in a U.S. execution. Missouri is the only state planning to use the drug.
Propofol is far and away the most commonly used anesthetic in the U.S., and around 85 percent of it is made in Europe. The European Union opposes the death penalty and is weighing whether to limit export, raising concerns about a potential U.S. propofol shortage.