A death row inmate’s last words before receiving the lethal injection

FILE - This undated file photo provided by the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry shows Murray Hooper. Hooper is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on November 16, 2022 for his conviction in the killings of Pat Redmond and his mother-in-law Helen Phelps in Phoenix. On Monday, November 14, a federal judge denied Hooper's offer to postpone the execution. (Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry via AP, File)

Despite his fate, in the few minutes before his death, Murray Hooper, 76, appeared in good spirits (Image: AP)

A man found guilty of murdering two people in the 1980s was executed in the US yesterday.

Murray Hooper, 76, received a lethal injection at Arizona State Prison in Florence that took about 15 minutes to take effect.

Despite his fate, Hooper appeared in good spirits in the few minutes before his death.

He chuckled several times while interacting with the execution team as they struggled to insert IV lines into his arm and leg to administer the sedative.

It took about 20 minutes for medical professionals to get organized, and at one point Hooper said, “I can’t believe this,” and shook his head.

After the death warrant was read, Hooper said, “It’s all said. Let it happen.’

He then said to his lawyers, friends and family: “Don’t cry for me – don’t be sad”.

He turned to look out the windows at 30 Witnesses seated on benches, including journalists, and smiled and waved.

The main entrance of the Arizona State Prison Complex-Florence was shown on Wednesday, November 16, 2022, in Florence, Arizona, shortly after the execution of prisoner Murray Hooper in the facility's death chamber for the 1980 murders of a man and a woman Execution was the third of the year in prison. (AP Photo/Bob Christie)

Hooper was given a lethal injection at Arizona State Prison in Florence (Image: AP)

State prison vehicles are shown at the main entrance of the Arizona State Prison Complex-Florence in Florence, Arizona, on Wednesday, November 16, 2022, shortly after prisoner Murray Hooper was executed in the facility's death chamber for the murders of a man and woman in 1980. The execution was the third of the year in prison. (AP Photo/Bob Christie)

Despite his fate, Hooper appeared in good spirits in the few minutes before his death (Image: AP)

After that, nothing happened for minutes, and Hooper asked, “What are we waiting for?”

As soon as the drug began to flow, his fingers would tremble and he yawned – then he soon stopped moving.

About 15 minutes elapsed between the start of the execution and when Hooper was pronounced dead.

Arizona didn’t carry out the death penalty for almost eight years after allegations that an execution was botched in 2014 and difficulties in getting the right medicine.

Hooper’s execution was the third since officers resumed duty in May this year, but no further executions are currently planned, although 110 people are currently on death row.

Hooper was convicted of the murders of William “Pat” Redmond and his mother-in-law, Helen Phelps, at Redmond’s Phoenix home.

Redmond’s wife Marilyn was also shot in the head as part of the attack, but she survived and testified against Hooper in court.

Authorities believe Hooper carried out the murders on behalf of a man who wanted to take over Redmond’s printing business.

His execution came just hours after the US Supreme Court denied a final appeal because authorities withheld information that Ms Redmond had failed to identify her killer in a photo lineup.

The courts also blocked attempts by Hooper’s attorneys to obtain fingerprints and DNA testing for evidence in the murders.

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https://metro.co.uk/2022/11/17/death-row-inmates-last-words-before-being-given-the-lethal-injection-17774698/ A death row inmate's last words before receiving the lethal injection

Justin Scacco

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