“Murderer of two University of Akron students appeals his execution date of Oct. 14, 2008 because he is too overweight for the process to be done properly. On Sept. 1, 1986 the bodies of two University of Akron students were found in a field behind Rolling Acres Mall.””
Murderer of two University of Akron students appeals his execution date of Oct. 14, 2008 because he is too overweight for the process to be done properly.
On Sept. 1, 1986 the bodies of two University of Akron students were found in a field behind Rolling Acres Mall.
The bodies were of Wendy Offredo and Dawn McCrery, age 21 and 20. Reportedly Richard Cooey and an accomplice dropped a concrete block on their car, disabling it.
The two men then posed as people trying to help the girls and kidnapped them. They then robbed, beat, raped, mutilated and choked the two girls to death.
Cooey is now in the process of appealing his death penalty because, due to his size and weight, the procedure can not be done properly.
Cooey is about 5 foot 7 inches and weights 267 pounds, and for a person of that stature, finding a vein for lethal injection can be extremely difficult.
The people doing these injections are not doctors; they can’t be due to the hippocratic oath, explains Dana Cole a former representative of Cooey and a current University of Akron law professor. She continued, saying that according to the State of Ohio constitution all forms of execution must be painless. Cole went on to say how in cases, like Cooey’s, when a vein cannot be found properly the process can become cruel and unusual.
Cole brought up the instance of Joseph L. Clark who was set to die on May 2, 2006 at the Lucasville State prison, when the lethal injection procedure went horribly wrong. Executioners had to repeatedly stop and restart the execution because a vein could not be reached. They tried both arms, both hands, both feet and jugular before finally establishing a vein just above his wrist.
Clark was in and out of consciousness and even rose up to tell the executioner this isn’t working. Some states have been known to use a cutdown method, where the executioners will cut into the inmates arm to reach a vein.
Members of the parole board sent unfavorable recomendations to Gov. Strickland, which means none of the parole board members recommended clemency for Richard Cooey, saying in their report, A sufficient, justifiable basis for mercy cannot be found.
Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh stated that she was pleased that the state chose to move forward with the Oct. 14 execution.
Twenty-two years have passed and no one has forgotten about the brutal and senseless murders of Wendy Offredo and Dawn McCreery, Walsh said. No one has forgotten the name Richard Cooey. A man remembered not only as a violent murderer but also for his flippant attitude, lack of emotion during the trial, and lack of remorse and sympathy for the family members of these girls.
Walsh proceeded to say that for the past 22 years Cooey had shown no signs of remorse and that the board had even began to question the reliability of Cooey’s story as they had done back in 2003.
It is time to bring closure to the family members of Wendy Offredo and Dawn McCreery, who were age 21 and 20 respectively when they were brutally murdered. Richard Cooey has been appealing his death sentence for more years than Wendy and Dawn’s entire life.
Cole explained how Cooey’s weight gain is not entirely his fault. Cooey is confined to his cell for 23 hours a day, which does not leave much time for adequate exercise.
When asked what Cooey and his lawyers wish to gain from these appeals, Cole said that we hope to have an extended stay of execution until this issue can be better resolved.
I have been down to the death house five years ago with Mr. Cooey, and people don’t really know what it’s like watching the time left in your life passing by.
It is much more cruel than people would like to believe. The public is safeguarded from what goes on in there. They don’t have to see how barbaric it really is.
Whether one agrees with the attempt to appeal the death penalty in this situation or not, the lawyers must do their job to make sure the law is upheld.
In this case that may mean an extended stay of execution until other means of a painless execution can be found.