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Missouri executes man eight years after reprieve

(Missouri Correctional Office, file/Associated Press)
(Missouri Correctional Office/Associated Press)

The state of Missouri executed Michael Taylor early Wednesday morning despite multiple appeals and uncertainty over the drug that would be used in the lethal injection.

Taylor, along with Roderick Nunley, had pleaded guilty in the 1989 kidnapping, rape and murder of 15-year-old Ann Harrison.

This execution came eight years after Taylor was originally supposed to be executed, before a court-ordered stay shortly before the scheduled execution kept him alive.

There was uncertainty leading up to the execution. Taylor’s attorneys filed a string of appeals, owing in part to the secrecy surrounding the drug the state would use. Missouri had to find a new supplier of its lethal injection drug after an Oklahoma compounding pharmacy refused to provide the drug. The state said last week that it had found a new supplier, though it didn’t identify the supplier.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) denied Michael Taylor clemency Tuesday, owing to the “wanton, heinous crimes” that led to Taylor being convicted and sentenced.

Taylor, who was injected with the drug pentobarbital, was pronounced dead at 12:10 a.m. He was the ninth person executed in the United States this year and the second person executed in Missouri.

Ann Harrison’s father, Bob Harrison, attended the execution but did not make a statement after, according to the Kansas City Star.

Mark Berman is a reporter on the National staff. He runs Post Nation, a destination for breaking news and stories from around the country.



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Mark Berman · February 26, 2014

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