In his last moments, Killer Joseph Wood irritated the families of both of his victims before he was executed in an Arizona prison.
In a botched execution, the double murderer died after enduring more than two hours. It was a ‘cruel’ and unusual death. Arizona executions were stopped and resumed only in May.
After being convicted for the murders of Debra Dietz, his ex-girlfriend, and her father Eugene Dietz, Wood was given a lethal injection. Wood, a convicted murderer, walked into a Tuscon, Arizona family car body shop and shot the pair on 7 August 1989.
The murder occurred shortly after Debbie, 29, obtained a restraining against her ex-partner when the lady ended their five-year-long relationship due to alleged domestic violence.
Wood was shot by police officers who arrived on the scene. The Police tried to injure him by shooting just to make sure that he doesn’t cause any more chaos.
Wood, who had spent 25 years in prison was sentenced to death in July 2014. He was executed at Florence State Prison in Arizona. The Dietz family was captured furious at his final moments.
According to reports, he looked at them and said, “I take comfort knowing that today my pain has stopped.” He also said, “I say a prayer that this day or any other, you will find peace in your hearts. And may God forgive all.”
Wood’s last moments got stretches for long as the lethal injection failed to work for the required 10 minutes.
Wood died after a long time, taking a total of one hour and 57 min.
His legal team requested that the execution be stopped after he reportedly gasped over 600 times. Dale Baich (one of his lawyers) stated at the time that a prolonged death could have prevented. He called it a cruel’ or ‘unusual punishment’.
Legal documents show that the incident was recorded as follows, “He has been gasping for over an hour. He is still breathing.”
Charles Ryan, State Department of Corrections Director, insisted that Wood would not have felt pain at the end of life. He added, “Throughout this execution I conferred with our IV team members, and was assured unambiguously that the inmate had been comatose, never in pain, or distress.”
Sky News was told at the time by the Dietz family that they were able to see the pain their relatives had suffered at Wood’s hands.
Jeanne Brown, Debbie’s sister, stated, “What I witnessed today with him being executed is nothing compared to what happened on August 7, 1989.
“Seeing your father and sister lying in a pool of blood is excruciating.”
Richard Brown, Debbie’s brother-in-law, said that he saw Debbie’s sister-in-law’s life disappear. These drugs are being exaggerated by you guys.
“This man committed a horrible murder and now you worry about his drug and how does it affect him. We should give him a bullet instead. Give him some Drano. My family can now rest in peace.”
The state of Arizona temporarily stopped executions due to the botched execution of Wood. The executions were not resumed until May this year.