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March 9 2010 | UNITED STATES

Ohio/USA

Lawrence Reynolds tries to kill himself before being executed. He is taken to the hospital for treatment. Then he will be executed within a week

 
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ANSA

PENA MORTE: USA; TENTA SUICIDIO, ESECUZIONE RINVIATA

WASHINGTON, 8 MAR - Alla vigilia della sua esecuzione, un condannato a morte dell'Ohio ha tentato il suicidio in carcere e, per prestargli i soccorsi necessari e salvargli la vita, la sua esecuzione e' stata rimandata di una settimana.

Protagonista della vicenda e' Lawrence Reynolds, 43 anni, condannato a morte nel 1994 per omicidio. L'uomo - ha riferito una portavoce del carcere - e' stato trovato incosciente nella sua cella la notte prima di essere trasferito nella prigione in cui - di li' a 24 ore - sarebbe stato ucciso. Secondo i primi accertamenti Reynolds ha ingerito una quantitativo imprecisato di farmaci.

L'uomo e' stato ricoverato in ospedale, mentre il governatore dello Stato, Ted Strickland, ha rinviato l'esecuzione di una settimana. E' la seconda volta che l'esecuzione della condanna a morte dell'uomo viene rimandata. La prima volta era l'8 ottobre scorso e Reynolds avrebbe dovuto essere messo a morte mediante iniezione letale. Ma tre settimane prima, durante un'altra esecuzione, tutto era stato sospeso perche' il boia non era riuscito a trovare la vena in cui iniettare la sostanza mortale.

Percio' in Ohio tutte le condanne in via di esecuzione con quella modalita', tra cui quella di Reynolds, erano state sospese.

 

EFE

Condenado toma una sobredosis de medicamentos para eludir el patíbulo

Washington, 8 mar .- El gobernador del estado de Ohio, Ted Strickland, aplazó hoy la ejecución de un hombre que fue encontrado inconsciente en su celda debido a una sobredosis de medicamentos que consumió dos días antes de su ejecución.

La ejecución, que debía realizarse mañana con una inyección letal, fue aplazada por siete días y ahora está prevista para el próximo 16 de marzo, dijeron hoy fuentes oficiales.

Una portavoz de la Penitenciaría estatal de Ohio señaló que Lawrence Reynolds fue hallado en el piso de la celda el domingo pasado y que hoy se encontraba en situación estable.

Reynolds, de 43 años y condenado a muerte por asesinar a un vecino en 1994, consumió los fármacos pese a que estaba bajo la vigilancia especial que se aplica a los condenados a muerte en los tres días previos a la ejecución, añadió.

La portavoz no aclaró qué tipos de fármacos consumió Reynolds, pero señaló que no se trató de un intento de suicidio.

Esta es la segunda vez que Reynolds logra postergar su ejecución.

En octubre del año pasado sus abogados lograron posponerla por primera vez al objetar el procedimiento con que se aplica la inyección letal.

 

AP

Lawrence Reynolds Jr: Death Row Inmate Overdose Delays Lethal Injection

COLUMBUS, Ohio () _ Gov. Ted Strickland on Monday postponed the execution of a convicted killer who managed to take an overdose of pills in his death row cell and was found unconscious just hours before he was to be driven to his execution.

Lawrence Reynolds Jr., 43, who was sentenced to die for killing his neighbor in 1994, was found unconscious around 11:30 p.m. Sunday at the Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown, prisons spokeswoman Julie Walburn said. He was alone in his cell on death row, she said.

Reynolds, who was scheduled to die by lethal injection Tuesday, was showing signs of consciousness Monday at a Youngstown hospital, but medical staff weren't prepared to release him, Walburn said. He was upgraded from serious to stable condition.

The inmate took the pills despite being under a 72-hour watch _ routine for inmates approaching an execution date _ that includes frequent monitoring by prison guards outside the cell, Walburn said.

Guards are supposed to keep inmates under constant observation, making log entries every 30 minutes, she said.

Death row inmates have access to a recreation area and, if approved, are allowed interaction with other inmates.

Walburn did not say what kind of pills Reynolds took or how he got them, and an investigation is under way.

Reynolds' injuries were self-imposed, she said, but declined to call it a suicide attempt. Strickland issued a seven-day reprieve and rescheduled the execution for March 16.

No further details about Reynolds' activities on Sunday were released. He was scheduled to leave at 3 a.m. Monday for the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, where the state's death chamber is located.

Reynolds has been challenging Ohio's new lethal injection procedure, which uses a one-drug system instead of three drugs. As expected, his attorneys filed an appeal Monday with the U.S. Supreme Court seeking to postpone the execution.

The Ohio public defender's office, which is representing Reynolds, declined to comment on the overdose until attorneys gathered more information, spokeswoman Amy Borror said.

This appears to be the first time since Ohio reinstated the death penalty in 1999 that an inmate scheduled for execution «has been found unresponsive mere hours from being transported» to the state death chamber, Walburn said.

It's rare, but not unheard of, for condemned inmates to attempt suicide as they approach execution dates, said Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, a group opposed to capital punishment.

California has executed 13 inmates since capital punishment was reinstated in 1978 _ a period during which 17 condemned inmates committed suicide.

Nine condemned inmates in Texas have committed suicide since death row reopened there in 1974. The last, William Robinson, 49, used a sheet to hang himself in his cell at a psychiatric center in February 2008.

Reynolds was sentenced to die for strangling his 67-year-old neighbor in her Cuyahoga Falls home to get money for alcohol.

Tuesday would have been the second time the state has tried to execute Reynolds. He was scheduled to die in October, but Strickland delayed the execution so the state could review its lethal injection procedure.

Since then, Ohio has switched from a three-drug process, which opponents said could cause severe pain, to the one-drug system. Reynolds lost a bid to have the execution delayed so he could challenge the new system when federal appeals court on Friday denied his request.

Three inmates have been executed with the state's new, one-drug new method, and in each case death came in just a few minutes. Washington last week became the second state to adopt the procedure.

 

AFP

USA: trop de médicaments, son exécution reportée le temps qu'il se remette

WASHINGTON, 8 mars 2010 - Un condamné à mort dans l'Ohio  qui devait être mis à mort mardi a avalé des médicaments jusqu'à être retrouvé inconscient dans sa cellule, et ne sera exécuté que dans une semaine, le temps qu'il se remette, a-t-on appris lundi auprès des autorités pénitentiaires.

Lawrence Reynolds, 43 ans, condamné à mort en 1994 pour meurtre, "a été retrouvé inconscient dans sa cellule à 23H30", dans la nuit de dimanche à lundi, quelques heures avant son transfèrement prévu vers la prison où il devait passer sa dernière journée, a expliqué à l'AFP Julie Walburn, porte-parole des autorités pénitentiaires.

Elle n'a pas voulu préciser quel type ni quelle quantité de médicaments il avait ingurgité, refusant également de parler de tentative de suicide. "Nous soupçonnons un comportement d'auto-destruction, peut-être une tentative d'overdose", a-t-elle déclaré.

"Il est dans un état stable et montre des signes de conscience", a ajouté Mme Walburn, précisant que le gouverneur de l'Ohio (nord), Ted Strickland, avait prononcé un sursis de sept jours.

"Ca donnera au détenu le temps de sortir de l'hôpital et à nos équipes le temps nécessaire pour préparer une exécution", a-t-elle expliqué.

La manière dont M. Reynolds a procédé pour prendre les médicaments reste sujette à investigation, le condamné à mort ayant été placé trois jours avant sa mort sous surveillance constante comme c'est le cas de tous les condamnés à mort dans l'Ohio.

C'est la deuxième fois que Lawrence Reynolds obtient un sursis signé de la main du gouverneur. Une première injection mortelle, prévue le 8 octobre, avait été repoussée après que l'équipe d'exécution de l'Ohio n'eut pas réussi à exécuter un condamné le 15 septembre 2009.

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