David Dene Martin, a former church youth counselor who killed his wife's lover and three other people, was executed in Louisiana's electric chair early today.
Martin, 32, was executed for gunning down two men and two women, including a nightclub owner who had an affair with Martin's wife, in 1977.
Martin, whose last hope for a reprieve was rejected yesterday by the Louisiana Pardon Board, was the second person to be executed by the state within a week. Robert Lee Willie was electrocuted Dec. 28. Thirty-two men and a woman have been executed in the United States since the Supreme Court lifted its ban on capital punishment in 1976.
Martin, in his appearance before the pardon board, blamed the shootings on his use of the drug PCP and a series of personal tragedies.
"I can't believe that because one night I acted out of character -- I know what I am inside -- I couldn't willfully take another person's life. I don't believe I am a defect of society," Martin said.
Character witnesses appearing before the board described Martin as a good Christian who turned to drugs and then murder after his daughter was born with brain damage and his wife began an extramarital affair.