Friday, September 05, 2008

June 17, 2008

...the man had been an inadvertent victim of Short's rage....

Last Meal: Short had a final meal request of ten pieces of fried chicken.

The skinny: Short was executed for the killing of a man with a homemade explosive. Then man had been an inadvertent victim of Short's rage.

More skinny: The 22-year old victim, a university student from Japan, lived in an Oklahoma City apartment directly above that of Short's former girlfriend and her sister.

After a fire started in the women's apartment,the two women and some children escaped. The father of one of children was also present and escaped with serious injuries. The fire spread quickly causing the victim's apartment to collapse.

The victim, who had been sleeping, suffered burns to ninety-five percent of his body. He was conscious when taken to the hospital, but he died several hours later.

The fire also injured several other people.

The blaze was started by a gasoline bomb. The former girlfriend and several friends testified that Short had threatened to "burn (her) and her family up." A search of Short's hotel room revealed a journal where he had stated that he had lost his girlfriend and "I need her to go on in my life. She is all I got." Gasoline was found on Short's clothing.

Last words and such: Just before the execution began, Short cried and told officials, "I have nothing to say."

Two of Short's victims also watched the execution and expressed no sympathy for him. "He took a life, and now his was taken," said Robert Hines, a former resident of the Oklahoma City apartment complex that Short firebombed. Hines suffered second- and third-degree burns over 35 percent of his body and is unable to work. He has had four surgeries on his arms and lower torso. "My whole life was changed that night because of him," he said after the execution.

Leading up to: Short admitted for the first time last month during a clemency hearing that he did indeed cause the fire, but he claims he doesn't remember the events of that day.

"Basically, I was up for two days or three days on drugs," Short said. "I was on drugs every day, but more so because of the personal problems I was going through."

Although he said he's sorry for the death of the Japanese exchange student, Short believes his punishment is too harsh.

"This wasn't just something I had in my mind to do," Short said. "I didn't even know the guy."

Factoids: Short was the...

7th murderer executed in U.S. in 2007
1106th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
1st murderer executed in Oklahoma in 2008
87th murderer executed in Oklahoma since 1976

Oklahoma has killed death-row inmates by lethal injection since 1977.

Short became the 170th person to be executed at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary.

Oklahoma became the sixth state to resume executions since the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a challenge to the three-drug cocktail used in most executions for the past 30 years.