For the first time since 1937, the state is expected to put two men to death on the same day when it executes Clayton Derrell Lockett and Charles Frederick Warner on Tuesday evening.
Lockett’s execution is scheduled for 6 p.m.; Warner’s is set for 8 p.m.
Lockett, 38, was sentenced to death for the 1999 murder of Stephanie Neiman, 19, in Perry. Warner, 46, is set to be executed for the 1997 murder of his live in girlfriend’s 11-month-old daughter, Adriana Waller.
The two death penalty cases have been subject to much legal wrangling and court action in the past several weeks.
Lockett was scheduled to be executed April 22, but his execution, along with Warner’s, were stayed by the Oklahoma Supreme Court. The Supreme Court later dissolved its stay after an executive order from Gov. Mary Fallin called the ruling an overreach.
The inmates had their executions delayed after a district judge agreed with their attorneys that a law allowing the state to keep secret its source of lethal injection drugs was unconstitutional. Lawyers argued drugs made at a compounding pharmacy used in their lethal injections could prove faulty and asked to know the source in order to verify their purity. The men were granted stays until their case was fully adjudicated.
In its ruling dissolving its original stay, the state Supreme Court also reversed the district court ruling, allowing the executions to go forward.
The state announced this month that after an exhaustive search, it was able to acquire the drugs to be used — midazolam, vecuronium bromide and potassium chloride — directly from a manufacturer.
As recently as Friday, the convicted murderers’ attorneys appealed to the state Court of Criminal Appeals for another delay in the executions. The court rejected that request.
Monday, a group known as Oklahoma Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty announced it would hold a sit-in from 2 to 5 p.m. Tuesday at the governor’s office and a protest and silent vigil in front of the Governor’s Mansion at 5:15 p.m.