Even though the state has placed a moratorium on executions amid the investigation into the lethal injection of an Oklahoma inmate, a state court has set an execution date for an Oklahoma inmate.
The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals decided Wednesday that Richard Eugene Glossip will be executed on Nov. 20.
In a May 8 filing with the court, Assistant Attorney General Seth Branham asked that the court both delay Charles Frederick Warner’s execution and set a date for Glossip’s lethal injection.
The request was made days after the botched execution of Clayton Derrell Lockett on April 29, and during an ongoing investigation into what went wrong that night.
“The setting of an execution date now will provide certainty to the public and Barry Van Treese’s family regarding a final resolution of this case,” Branham wrote.
Mark Henricksen, an Oklahoma City defense attorney representing Glossip, disagrees.
Henricksen filed an appeal last month to the request for an execution date.
He said given that the investigation into Lockett’s lethal injection is still ongoing, it is not appropriate to set a date for any future executions.
“We believe until we have any scientific answers as to what happened with Clayton Lockett’s execution that Oklahoma should not proceed to schedule another execution,” Henricksen said.
“I really think we ought to know what went wrong before the state executes anyone else.”
Warner was originally scheduled for execution two hours after Clayton Lockett on April 29, however, his execution was pushed back to Nov. 13 after Lockett’s execution went awry.
Governor Mary Fallin ordered the investigation into Lockett’s execution be led by state Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Thompson, and both Fallin’s office and the attorney general’s have stated no executions will take place in the state until that inquiry is complete and capital punishment protocol within the state Corrections Department is evaluated.
Glossip, 51, was sentenced to die for his role in the 1997 killing of Barry Alan Van Treese at Oklahoma City’s Best Budget Inn.
Glossip was a manager at the motel. Prosecutors said Glossip feared being fired and devised a plot to kill Treese.
The motel’s maintenance man, Justin Sneed, pleaded guilty to killing Treese, and he testified against Glossip in exchange for a sentence of life without parole.
We believe until we have any scientific answers as to what happened with Clayton Lockett’s execution that Oklahoma should not proceed to schedule another execution,”
Attorney Mark Henricksen,