Texas carried out its first execution of 2013, last night in Huntsville. It was the 493rd post-Furman Texas execution since 1982, and the 254th execution conducted under the administration of Governor Rick Perry. Texas has the nation's most active death chamber and accounts for more than 37% of the executions in America's death penalty states.
Reuters posts, "Georgia, Texas execute inmates for 1990s' murders," by Corrie MacLaggan and David Beasley. It's via the Chicago Tribune.
A man convicted of killing his former girlfriend by dousing her with gasoline and setting her on fire was put to death by lethal injection in Texas on Thursday, the state's first execution of the year.
In Georgia, a man convicted of fatally shooting two university students in 1995 was executed after the U.S. Supreme Court denied his last-minute appeal.
Carl Henry Blue, 48, was pronounced dead at 6:56 p.m. local time at the state penitentiary at Huntsville, said the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
France has issued a diplomatic communique on the execution of Blue:
France condemns the execution of Carl Blue in the state of Texas, in the United States, on February 21. With 15 prisoners executed in 2012 and 493 executions since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976, Texas is responsible for more than a third of executions in the United States.
France reaffirms its constant opposition to the death penalty everywhere and under all circumstances. This is the thrust of the campaign for the universal abolition of the death penalty, launched on October 9, 2012. Our diplomatic network is fully committed to this priority, wherever the death penalty continues to be applied. France urges the Texas authorities to put an end to the executions, to observe a moratorium and to initiate a debate on the abolition of the death penalty.
"Georgia executes Andrew Cook," is by Rhonda Cook in today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Andrew Cook was executed Thursday, 18 years after he randomly shot two Mercer University students who were parked at Lake Juliette in Monroe County as they were enjoying the view.
He was pronounced dead at 11:22 p.m. Cook’s final words were apologies to his family and the families of the victims.
Cook was the first person Georgia has executed using a single massive dose of a sedative instead of a series of three drugs that had been used to execute 29 other men.
His death came after the U.S. Supreme Court had considered his plea for mercy for almost five hours. The appeal was sent to the high court before 6 p.m., an hour before his scheduled execution.
To date, there have been three executions in American death penalty states this year; a total of 1,323 post-Furman executions since 1977.
According to TDCJ, 11 additional execution dates have been set for 2013, including six in March. More will be added.