Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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July 19, 2012

Texas carries out first single drug execution

HUNTSVILLE, Texas — Texas put a 33-year-old man to death Wednesday, using a single drug for the first time.

Yokamon Hearn was pronounced dead 25 minutes after the lethal dose was administered. It did not appear that he had any unusual reactions to the single dose as he became the sixth person executed in Texas this year.

Last week the Texas Department of Criminal Justice announced it would switch from a three-drug combination used since 1982 to a single dose of the sedative pentobarbital for executions following a drug shortage.

Other states where the death penalty is used have had similar problem obtaining the necessary drugs used in conducting executions.

After the lethal dose was administered, Hearn closed his eyes and began snoring before his heart stopped beating.

About 3 1/2 hours before Hearn’s execution, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected appeals to halt it. None of the appeals addressed the change in the state’s execution drug policy.

Hearn was convicted and sentenced to die for the murder and carjacking of 23-year-old Frank Meziere of Plano on March 26, 1998.

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Details for this story were provided by The Huntsville (Texas) Item.

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