Ohio’s 3 executions lie with a new injection

Columbus, Ohio plans to use a new three-drug combination of lethal chemicals to execute three death row inmates in 2017. 

The state plans to resume executions next year with this new drug after a three-year hiatus, state officials said Monday.

Ohio is one about a dozen states where executions have been stalled amid difficulties obtaining dependable drugs.

Ohio’s last execution took place in January 2014 when Dennis McGuire was put to death for the murder of a pregnant woman in 1993. Corrections officials employed a two-drug combination of the sedative midazolam and painkiller hydromorphone. The process took 26 minutes, and witnesses said McGuire seized and gasped for 15 minutes.

Inmates going to be executed with new drug:
Ronald Phillips, convicted in Summit County.

Execution date: Jan. 12.

Crime: Phillips, 43, was sentenced to die for the rape and murder of Sheila Marie Evans, his girlfriend’s 3-year-old daughter, in Akron in 1993. His execution has been put on hold several times, including in 2013 when he made a last-minute request that was ultimately denied to donate a kidney to his mother, who was on dialysis, and possibly his heart to his sister.


Raymond Tibbetts, convicted in Hamilton County.

Execution date: Feb. 15.

Crime: Tibbetts, 59, killed his wife, 42-year-old Judith Crawford, by beating her with a bat and stabbing her during an argument over Tibbetts’ crack cocaine habit. Tibbetts then stabbed 67-year-old Fred Hicks to death at Hicks’ Cincinnati home. Hicks had hired Crawford as a caretaker and allowed the couple to stay with him. Tibbetts was sentenced to death for the killing of Hicks and life imprisonment without parole for the death of Crawford.


Gary Otte, convicted in Cuyahoga County.

Execution date: March 15.

Crime: Otte, 44, shot 61-year-old Robert Wasikowski to death on Feb. 12, 1992, and stole about $400 after asking to come inside his apartment in Parma in suburban Cleveland to use the phone. The next day, Otte shot 45-year-old Sharon Kostura to death in the same apartment and stole $45 and her car keys after forcing his way inside. Otte was sentenced to death for both slayings.


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