Alabama and Georgia carry out executions, Oklahoma to begin using nitrogen gas
17 March 2018
Just two weeks after a botched execution that resulted in hours of excruciating pain for an inmate on death row, the state of Alabama on Thursday carried out an execution of a man convicted of murder who suffered from severe mental illness.
Michael Wayne Eggers, 50, was convicted and sentenced to death for killing his boss, Bennie Francis Murray, in 2000. Murray hired Eggers to work at her concessions stand at a traveling carnival. According to prosecutors, Eggers admitted to strangling Murray after a disagreement arose while she drove Eggers to his car one evening in Walker County, Alabama, northwest of Birmingham.
Eggers appealed his conviction but dropped his appeal following a disagreement with his attorneys. In a handwritten court filing, Eggers withdrew his appeal and asked Alabama to carry out his “immediate execution in the interests of truth, law and justice.”
Attorneys for Eggers asked the US Supreme Court to intervene in the case, arguing that Eggers was not competent when he made the decision. They told the court that Eggers suffered from schizophrenia and delusions and that the dispute arose over Eggers’ firm belief that he was the subject of a grand government conspiracy. His attorneys wrote that Eggers “would rather die than be represented by lawyers who do not support his delusional view of the case.”
The Supreme Court ruled at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday that the execution could proceed, and the lethal injection was administered about 80 minutes later.
In an email to ABC News, attorney John Palombi wrote, “Tonight the state of Alabama assisted a severely mentally ill man in committing suicide. Michael Eggers was as mentally ill tonight as…