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Tennessee execution: Billy Ray Irick tortured to death, expert says in new filing

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Editor's note: Reporter Dave Boucher was one of seven state-required media witnesses at Irick's execution. 
Billy Ray Irick felt searing pain akin to torture before he died in a Tennessee prison in August, but steps taken in carrying out his execution blocked signs of suffering, according to a doctor who reviewed information about the lethal injection.
In new court filings entered late Thursday amidst an ongoing legal challenge of Tennessee’s lethal injection protocol, Dr. David Lubarsky said statements from people who witnessed the execution indicated the controversial drug midazolam failed to ensure Irick could not feel pain during his death.
As a result, the death row inmate “experienced the feeling of choking, drowning in his own fluids, suffocating, being buried alive, and the burning sensation caused by the injection of the potassium chloride,” Lubarsky wrote in the filing.
The document also says the state did not follow its own lethal injection protocol, raising questio…

Florida father spared from death penalty for beating his 5-year-old son to death

Darell Avant Sr. and Jr.
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - An Orange County jury decided to spare a man from the death sentence for beating his five-year-old son to death.

Darrell Avant Sr. was convicted last week of killing Darell Avant, Jr. after the boy got in trouble at school. 

Avant Sr. will spend the rest of his life in prison without parole.

Prosecutors said Avant Sr. abused the trust he had as the boy's father

One of the big claims the defense made revolves around Avant Sr.’s waiting 30 minutes after the beating to call 911. 

During the trial, prosecutors used Avant Sr.’s Google searches as evidence. They said he searched, “how to tell if an infant is dead,” before calling 911. 

This week, jurors and the judge heard from family, a teacher and doctors.

A doctor that testified Monday said Avant Sr. may not have been able to recognize that his son was dead.

On Tuesday, a neurologist testified Avant Sr. used his mental problems to avoid the death penalty. A day earlier, a different doctor blamed Avant Sr.’s murderous rage on a brain injury and that his cognitive abilities are not as good as they should be.

The child’s mother also took the witness stand and said she wished she could go back and pick him up from school herself instead of leaving him with a killer.

"He meant the world, he meant the world to me. And no words, no words can explain how much he meant to me," said Jessica Phillips.

Source: wftv.com, Kevin Williams, Field Sutton, July 5, 2018


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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