An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.  - Gandhi

Oklahoma executes five of 18 men put to death in the U.S. in 2022

By Khaleda Rahman – Newsweek  12/26/22

This year was the eighth consecutive year with fewer than 30 executions, according to a report by the Death Penalty Information Center. However, 2022 saw a record number of “botched” and failed executions, the report said, with seven of the 20 attempts to put inmates to death being visibly problematic.

Once again, executions were concentrated in the South. Texas and Oklahoma each executed five inmates, while Alabama put two inmates to death and Mississippi executed one. Arizona executed three inmates in 2022, while Missouri executed two.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey halted executions in November and ordered a “top-to-bottom” review of the state’s capital punishment after the failed execution of Kenneth Smith—the second time in two months that the state had to call off an execution.

Here are the five men who were executed in 2022:

Donald Grant Oklahoma executed Grant, 46, on January 27. He was sentenced to death for the murder of two employees at a LaQuinta Inn in Del City during a robbery in 2001.

His final words were reported to be disjointed and incoherent. “Yo, God, I got this,” Grant said, according to witnesses. “No medication. I didn’t take nothing. Brooklyn for life.”

Gilbert Ray Postelle

Oklahoma executed Postelle, 35, on February 17. He was sentenced to die for his involvement in the Memorial Day 2005 shooting deaths of James Alderson, Terry Smith, Donnie Swindle and Amy Wright at a home in southeast Oklahoma City.

Postelle’s attorneys had argued that he should not be executed for various reasons, including a learning disability.

James Coddington

Coddington, 50, was executed at Oklahoma’s state penitentiary on August 25. He admitted to killing 73-year-old Albert Hale, a friend and co-worker who refused to loan him $50 to buy cocaine. Coddington beat Hale on the head at least three times with a hammer inside Hale’s home in Choctaw in 1997.

He was the first of 25 death row inmates whose executions were scheduled after a federal judge upheld the state’s lethal injection method in June.

Benjamin Cole

Oklahoma executed Cole, 57, on October 20. It went ahead despite claims from his attorneys that he was severely mentally ill.

Cole was sentenced to death in 2004 for the murdering his 9-month-old daughter, Brianna. Prosecutors said Cole bent her backward in her crib when her cries interrupted his video game, snapping her spine and tearing her aorta, in December 2002.

Richard Fairchild

Oklahoma executed Fairchild on November 17, his 63rd birthday. Fairchild, an ex-Marine, received the lethal injection at Oklahoma’s state penitentiary in McAlester for the 1993 killing of Adam Brookhall, his girlfriend’s 3-year-old son.

“Today’s a day for Adam, justice for Adam,” Fairchild said while strapped to gurney in the death chamber.

“I’m at peace with God. Don’t grieve for me because I’m going home to meet my heavenly father.”

To see the complete list of 18 men executed in 2022, click here.


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