Saturday, July 23, 2005

July 19, 2005

...Pennington left the store empty-handed when the register failed to open...

Last Meal: For his final meal, he requested a small vegetarian pizza, a large garden salad with Italian dressing, a hot fudge sundae, a bag of Oreo cookies and a pint of milk.

The skinny: Pennington, 37, who changed his name to Sharieff Sallahdin while at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary, was executed for killing a store clerk during a 1991 robbery. He blamed it on steroid use.

More skinny: The former weightlifter and body builder was convicted in 1993.

Pennington, who was stationed at nearby Fort Sill, shot the man once in the back with a sawed-off, 12-gauge shotgun. After killing him, Pennington fired several times into a cash register and throughout the store.

Despite the killing and using all his ammunition, Pennington left the store empty-handed when the register failed to open. Police tracked Pennington to his wife's house in Akron, Ohio, where he was arrested.

Legal Machinations: Pennington has argued in court that the murder was a psychotic consequence of his steroid use. He said in appeals of the death sentence that the anabolic steroids, taken to enhance his weightlifting and body building regimen, altered his normal behavior and transformed him from a disciplined soldier into a fleeing killer.

Last words and such: Shortly before 6 p.m., the 5-foot-7 man was strapped to a gurney in the execution chamber.

Pennington's only comment was, "No statement." He then mouthed the words "I love you," to two family members who witnessed his execution.

Factoids: The next execution in Oklahoma is scheduled for Aug. 11. Kenneth Eugene Turrentine, 52, is scheduled to die that day for a Tulsa County killing spree.

Pennington was the....

20th murderer executed in U.S. in 2005
974th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
3rd murderer executed in Oklahoma in 2005
78th murderer executed in Oklahoma since 1976