[Oklahoma City, OK, October 8, 2015] Today another disturbing revelation came out about Oklahoma’s incompetence when it comes to carrying out the death penalty. The nation continues to watch these embarrassing events unfold and this is just the latest in a long line of failures of the Fallin administration.
Responding to an investigation by The Oklahoman that found the Department of Corrections failed to follow protocol in the January execution of Charles Warner, Governor Fallin said she is “fully supportive of” an inquiry into the Warner execution launched by the Attorney General. Fallin believes that this inquiry will provide Pruitt’s office with information needed to “make sure justice is served competently and fairly,” but we wonder how that is possible when the execution in question happened more than nine months ago.
On October 1st, Alex Weintz, the Governor’s spokesman, said “There was never any question of whether this drug [potassium acetate] was effective or whether it would achieve the same outcome” regarding the stayed execution of Richard Glossip.
In May 2014, former Representative and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Joe Dorman called for a blue ribbon panel be formed under the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation to investigate the botched execution of Clayton Lockett. At the time, Fallin dismissed that idea as political, yet now she has hired an outside counsel to investigate these latest mishaps.
The Oklahoma Democratic Party now calls for an independent investigation into the execution practices and procedures of the Oklahoma Department of Corrections.
“This is just another example of the hypocrisy and incompetence we have come to expect from Governor Fallin & Attorney General Pruitt,” said Oklahoma Democratic Party Interim Executive Director Russell Griffin. “The people of Oklahoma deserve better from their elected leaders. The Governor and her administration have had well over a year to get this right yet, once again, we are presented with evidence that they can’t or won’t. It is past time for there to be an independent investigation into the Department of Corrections and its execution protocols. We no longer trust that the Governor or Attorney General can handle the jobs they were elected to do. When even The Oklahoman Editorial Board says that this embarrassment needs to stop, Governor Fallin needs to realize she has once again failed to lead.”