Thursday, June 19, 2003

June 18, 2003

two changes...slim and none and no one knows Slim.

Last Meal: a cheeseburger with tomato, mustard, ketchup, lettuce, and pickle; french fries with ketchup; apple pie, and Pepsi.

The skinny: Martin was executed for the robbery killing of a 70-year-old Cleveland pharmacist. Martin said a man he knew only as Slim committed the crime. He said he walked to the store to see what happened after the robbery occurred. Slim was never identified. A former girlfriend testified at trial that Slim had nothing to do with the killing. The robbery netted less than $40.

Martin, a high-school dropout with a short criminal record, was arrested days later at his apartment a block away. Investigators found no gun, nor other physical evidence linking Martin to the crime, the public defender's office said. Martin was convicted largely on the testimony of the girlfriend, who was never charged.

Last days: Martin spent most of Wednesday morning on the phone with his mother and visiting with other relatives at the prison, including a son he hasn’t seen for 20 years. He slept for about an hour.

He had dropped the retardation claim after a psychologist hired by his attorneys determined he was not mentally retarded.

Last words and such: In a written statement released after his death, and during a three-minute speech while strapped to the death table, Martin compared his situation to the trials of Jesus. "I'm being treated the same way Christ was treated," he said from the table. "But I don't hold no grudges against no one."

"Just the same, the state of Ohio has succeeded in its quest for my life by way of perjured testimony and false witnesses who were paid to tell the lies they did," the written statement said.

Martin told his family he loved them and appreciated the life he had with them, "even though it wasn't a good life."

His last words were, "God bless all of you. That's all I have to say."

Factoids: Martin was the eighth inmate to be executed since Ohio began carrying out the death penalty again in 1999. Three more executions are scheduled in the next five weeks.

The injection consists of sodium pentothal, which induces unconsciousness; pavulon, a muscle relaxant that stops breathing; and potassium chloride, which stops the heart.

For the first time since 1999, no execution witnesses represented the victim.

This summary was compiled from various news accounts.