National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Convicted Missouri killer executed

 |  NCR Today

In the early morning hours of Wednesday, Feb. 26, the state of Missouri executed Michael A. Taylor via lethal injection. Taylor was previously convicted of the abduction, rape and killing of Ann Harrison, 15, in 1989. He pled guilty and was sentenced to death.

From the Associated Press:

“Michael Taylor, 47, was pronounced dead at 12:10 a.m. at the state prison in Bonne Terre. Federal courts and the governor had refused last-minute appeals from his attorneys, who argued that the execution drug purchased from a compounding pharmacy could have caused Taylor inhuman pain and suffering.

Taylor offered no final statement, although he mouthed silent words to his parents, clergymen and other relatives who witnessed his death. As the process began, he took two deep breaths before closing his eyes for the last time. There were no obvious signs of distress.

His victim, 15-year-old Ann Harrison, was in her driveway, carrying her school books, flute and purse, when Taylor and Roderick Nunley abducted her. The men pulled her into their stolen car and drove her to a home, where they raped and fatally stabbed her as she pleaded for her life. Nunley was also sentenced to death.

Help keep NCR going!
We rely on donations to bring you the latest news.
Donate today.

Ann's father and two of her uncles witnessed Taylor's execution. They declined to make a public statement.

In their appeals, Taylor's attorneys questioned Missouri's use of an unnamed compounding pharmacy to provide the execution drug, pentobarbital. They also cited concerns about the state executing inmates before appeals were complete and argued that Taylor's original trial attorney was so overworked that she encouraged him to plead guilty.”

From The Kansas City Star:

“Wednesday’s execution was the fourth carried out in Missouri since late November, when it adopted the use of the sedative pentobarbital to execute prisoners. It came after a day of intense and multifaceted legal challenges to Taylor’s execution in state and federal courts that ended when the U.S. Supreme Court denied Taylor’s last request for a stay.”

The National Catholic Reporter covered the recent developments regarding the execution in an earlier post.

 [Mick Forgey is an NCR Bertelsen intern. His email address is mforgey@ncronline.org.]

NCR Comment code: (Comments can be found below)

Before you can post a comment, you must verify your email address at Disqus.com/verify.
Comments from unverified email addresses will be deleted.

  • Be respectful. Do not attack the writer. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the original idea will be deleted. NCR reserves the right to close comment threads when discussions are no longer productive.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report abuse" button. Once a comment has been flagged, an NCR staff member will investigate.

For more detailed guidelines, visit our User Guidelines page.

For help on how to post a comment, visit our reference page.

 

Feature-flag_GSR_start-reading.jpg

NCR Email Alerts

 

In This Issue

August 15-28, 2014

08-15-2014.jpg

Not all of our content is online. Subscribe to receive all the news and features you won't find anywhere else.