Witnesses To Arkansas Executions Reveal What Happened In The Death Chamber

LITTLE ROCK, AR — Witnesses to the double execution carried out by the state of Arkansas on Monday night have offered wildly differing accounts of their experiences.

The Arkansas Department of Correction administered its lethal-injection cocktail to Jack Jones, 52 (above, left), at 7:06 P.M. CST and a coroner pronounced him dead at 7:20 P.M. Marcel Williams, 46 (right), was declared dead by the same procedure just over three hours later at 10:33 P.M. CST.

Related: Arkansas Needs Volunteers To Watch 8 Executions In April — Could You Do It?

An Associated Press reporter who witnessed the execution of Jack Jones, which took 14 minutes, said he saw Jones move his lips for about a minute after he completed his final words — but that it was unclear whether Jones was speaking.

Attorneys for Marcel Williams, who was executed after Jones, said that Jones was moving his lips and gulping for air about five minutes into the lethal injection, and argued that the execution appeared to be “torturous and inhumane.” Jones’ attorney said that he witnessed his client’s mouth moving five minutes into the execution, three to five times.

Related: “It’s Like A Slaughter House”: West Memphis 3’s Damien Echols On Arkansas Executions

A state prison spokesman said Jones was speaking to state Correction Department Director Wendy Kelley when his lips moved, but did not know if a transcript was available. The state does not record audio or video of its executions.

Republican Representative Kim Hammer, who witnessed both executions Monday night, said he saw Jones moving his lips for about 30 to 45 seconds as though he were speaking, but did not notice the inmate gulping for air. Hammer reported that he “saw nothing that was inhumane that would have caused me to change my mind” about the death penalty.

And J.R. Davis, a spokesman for Governor Asa Hutchinson, described the executions as “flawless.”

Related: West Memphis 3’s Damien Echols Protests; Federal Judge Halts Arkansas Executions

According to a log of the execution released by the state Tuesday, it took officials eight minutes to connect Jones to IV lines, and 40 minutes to connect Williams.

Ledell Lee [Arkansas Department of Correction]

Ledell Lee [Arkansas Department of Correction]

While he was on the gurney, Williams’ death sentence was briefly put on hold after his lawyers asked for and received a stay by claiming that Jones’ execution was “torturous.” During this time, he was allowed to go back to his cell and use the toilet before returning to the death chamber.

Jones’ and Williams’ executions are part of an aggressive schedule set by Hutchinson that originally planned to execute eight men within 10 days, because a key lethal-injection drug expires at the end of the month.

Related: 6 Things To Know About Richard Glossip’s Controversial Delayed Execution

Four of those executions were blocked by courts, but Arkansas executed Ledell Lee on Thursday night.

It’s unclear whether the concerns over Jones’ execution could pose challenges for the state’s plan to execute Kenneth Williams on Thursday night.

Read more:

WFMJ

Main photo: Jack Jones (left) and Marcel Williams (right) [Arkansas Department of Correction]

  • Robert W Ross

    hanging in the town square is faster with out the bs drugs

    • Melissa Harris

      And more humane.

    • Porque

      What if you were “hanging out” with friends in the town square, and we’re accused and convicted of murder and sentenced to death? But all you did was hang out with friends in the town square? Which would you prefer, hanging or lethal injection, by way of torture?

      • sspistol

        Except the thugs that got put down were indeed murderers. Admitted murderers. They should have been relieved of their heart beats 5 minutes after they were found guilty.

        • Porque

          90% of people “convicted” and in prison in a 100% corrupt, totalitarian, police-state are in prison because they took a plea bargain that was offered to them by the prosecutor. Their choice was to risk death or a longer prison time or get not death and a much shorter prison sentence. Most people in this situation, especially the poor and disenfranchised, whether innocent or guilty take the plea. That is why a large portion, perhaps over 50% that are in prison are innocent! They may be “ad!Itted” felons, but the circumstances of corruption, injustice, a defunct legal system, must be taken into account in analysis of the overall situations.

          • Melissa Sparks

            WOW!! Over 50% are NOT GUILTY!!! Someone should look into freeing all those poor innocent people!!! That’s a load of crap! For instance the Innocence Project has had 321 DNA exoneration in the U.S. and 30 have involved people who originally pled guilty to crimes they didn’t commit. Also, again according to the Innocence Project, it is estimated that between 2.3 and 5 percent of ALL U.S. prisioners are innocent. So, I don’t know, maybe put some research behind your post next time.

          • Porque

            I don’t agree with your interpretation of what you say are the Innocent Projects’s figures are regarding innocent vs guilty in prison. They are way higher than that in actuality regarding guilty people in prison in this totalitarian state! I suppose that you also believe the ‘official’ statistics that this totalitarian state decries are the unemployment rate of 6%, when it’s really 22-28%?

          • Melissa Sparks

            it wasn’t my “interpretation” it was directly from their website. I did my research. And one would believe that coming from the Innocence Project, that the figures can be reliable, as they literally are in the business of freeing people who are not guilty. The figures on their website are not up for me to interpret it is their figures in black and white from their research. I am curious as to where your information on the percentages being way higher are from.

          • Porque

            The innoçense project is a commendable organization. I will delve into incarceration statistics more thoroughly, but I know that the Innocent in prison is higher than 2.5-5%! And those that are in prison are there because 90% took a plea bargain!

          • Melinda Hooper

            You are correct.

  • Martha Bartha

    Death is what you’re all gonna get!

    • 🍀Irish.Deceptacon🍀

      the truth

      • Martha Bartha

        Oh MY!👁👁

    • Porque

      Yes! If we got justice, we’d all be dead!

      • Martha Bartha

        Death is inevitable👿!

  • Carol Doria Nigro

    THEY NEED TO CLEAN HOUSE . Get on with the executions. Enough time letting those scum bags breathing air!!

    • Porque

      The crime in the suites is much more devastating to humanity, than the crime in the streets!

  • Meredith R Segal

    So the reason they were on death row had nothing to do with the fact that they raped and killed innocent women? I’m sorry that their lawyers were able to drag their cases on by grasping at strings by stating their client, where too sick to be put to death! Or stop the death even momentarily because the lawyer thinks the process is torture and inhuman. Sorry, you lost and the state won!

  • JenniCooper

    I have no sympathy for monsters like these mentioned here. I just did a quick search on their crimes and I’m appalled that they were allowed to live as long as they did. These sorry sh*ts raped and murdered back in 1994 and 1995. If it were my loved ones, I wouldn’t feel much sense of justice until they were gone. 23 years after the fact is NOT FAIR to anyone.

    • Porque

      I don’t have any sympathy for the perps that are associated with this 100% corrupt, totalitarian, authoritarian-police-state government on the city state and especially federal levels. Or, the less than ten percent of the one percent owners/ controllers or the owned miscreants. Or the 95-97% of the totally worthless, self-deluded, tyranny-embracing(patriotic), willingly-led, no-integrity, non-principled, valueless, know-nothing, don’t-have-an-original-thought, never-read-a-book, morally-deprived, lazy, out-of-shape, self-policing, morons, known as the American people!

    • Porque

      If someone raped and murdered a loved one of mine, I’d try to abscond with them and spend at least three days with them with needle nose pliers and a blow torch. But I don’t agree with the government having the authority to kill people or even exist period!

    • Alan

      Doesn’t seem like it is meted out fairly though, does it? Why is Stanford swimmer Brock Turner not being executed for raping an unconscious woman and ruining her life?
      Because a) he’s white, b) he’s wealthy, c) he’s good at swimming, or d) All of the above.
      He could be rotting in his cell for the next 20 years awaiting execution but instead he gets a few nights in a jail before heading back to the family home in the suburbs.
      Something stinks in the Criminal Justice System.

      • sspistol

        Rape isn’t a death penalty offense.

        • Kimberly McIntosh

          It should be

          • Porque

            That’s exactly why this Government is a totalitarian, police-state. See something you are far removed from, don’t study all the ramifications, give the state extraordinary powers over individuals. It is morons like you who should be executed!

      • Porque

        It’s not something that stinks. The whole thing is putrid, and that be this government!

  • Martha Bartha

    Cruel & Unusual punishment, right?

  • Sherri Willis

    Cruel and unusual?! Did they have mercy for their victims? I should say not. So, to use the old cliche if you can’t do the time or take the needle, don’t do the crime. And yes, I do live
    in the state of Arkansas. 😈

    • Porque

      I bet you’re front porch is housing for five or more dogs!

      • Sherri Willis

        No, I do not own a dog. Or a gun, thank you very much. But I believe in the death penalty.

        • Porque

          I believe in private justice, but I don’t believe in the state, even in it’s existence!

        • Porque

          You’re too stupid to believe in anything unless you’re told to by another moron!

  • Ingrid Belles

    Who would call lethal injection torture? Liberals, that’s who! The man was guilty. He said his peace before his execution and now he is dead. Seems like justice to me. Perhaps the victim’s family can finally get some closure.

    • Gail Malin

      I’m a liberal, and I don’t call lethal injection torture. I’m sure it can be badly administered, and be a very disturbing process. I have never made up my mind about capital punishment. On one hand, there are people whose crimes are so horrible that I don’t believe they deserve to live, and mercy and an easy death are not necessarily what they deserve. I won’t argue percentages of innocent people in prison, because I really don’t know. I just know that it doesn’t feel right to execute someone who is begging for a dna analysis that will prove an innocence claim without giving them that small thing.

      • Doxology

        Our system bends over backwards to give convicted criminals chance after chance while in prison to try and overturn, gain a new trial, seek help from the innocence project….I think they have had many of those small things at the taxpayer’s expense. Sleep easy.

        • Gail Malin

          I’m thinking mostly of those convicted before DNA testing became so wide spread.

        • Porque

          B.S.!

  • Porque

    Is it true that the Governor of this state fornicates with pigs?

    • Elizabeth

      No but it is true that you do. Since you have responded to every comment negatively, I’m nearly certain that you have one or more family members in the prison system. I’m sure you spew the usual useless drivel of how “they were set up”, “they were railroaded because they were black” or one of my faves “the cops planted evidence”. Perhaps you have served time yourself? While I realize there are occasional wrongful convictions, the vast majority of criminals in prison are exactly where they should be, locked up in cages like the animals they are!

      • Porque

        You are wrong on all counts concerning me! But, the fact that you live in Arkansas where the Governor fornicates with pigs, and you have incestuous relations with your relatives, and your front porch is housing to five dogs, belies anything you say!

        • Elizabeth

          Nope wrong again, but I’m sure you’re use to it. Only a simple minded person would conclude that anyone commenting on a story about Arkansas death sentences must live in Arkansas!
          What’s interesting & clearly unbeknownst to you, is when uneducated trolls (like yourself) initiate absurd accusations that have nothing to do with the story, those accusations are something quite familiar. So were you the perpetrator or victim?
          Oh & don’t think for a moment that your screenname Porque & your incessant mentioning of “fornicating with pigs” is lost on me and most likely others! I assume you’d be the perpetrator in this situation!!!

          • Porque

            Arkansas residents ike yourself are incestuos, inbreds. This allows for you’re inaccurate reflection of reality. Oink, oink!

        • Doxology

          You are an angry, ignorant, blathering idiot. Porque. Why I do not know…but everybody who reads what you are spewing is left with no doubt.

          • Porque

            L.O.L. Go back to your trailor in Raytown, Arkansas.

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  • Brandie Lee Tibbs

    I see that none of their crimes were listed in this. I guess because it would be hard to sympathize with a cold blooded murder.