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

Oklahoma carries out execution of Scott Eizember

Death Penalty Info CenterPosted Jan 12, 2023

Oklahoma has carried out the first of eleven executions scheduled for 2023, administering a lethal injection to death-row prisoner Scott Eizember on January 12. The execution was a continuation of a 29-month execution spree between August 2022 and December 2024 in which the state intends to put 25 prisoners to death — 58% of the state’s death row.

It was the third execution of 2023, following the January 3 execution of Amber McLaughlin in Missouri and the January 10 execution of Robert Fratta in Texas. Oklahoma has carried out 119 executions since the 1970s, second only to Texas.

Oklahoma has scheduled one execution each month in 2023, with the exception of September. The 11 men scheduled for execution include several who have severe mental illness, intellectual disability, and/or brain damage. The next execution, that of Richard Glossip, is scheduled for February 16.

Stan Perry, who led an independent investigation into Glossip’s case commissioned by a bipartisan group of state legislators, said in June 2022 that “[n]o reasonable jury, hearing the complete record and the uncovered facts detailed in [the investigators’] report, would have convicted Richard Glossip of capital murder.” The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals in December denied Glossip an evidentiary hearing to present the new evidence of his innocence.

In the days leading up to Eizember’s execution, his case became the subject of litigation related to a decision by the Oklahoma Department of Corrections (ODOC) to bar his spiritual advisor, Rev. Dr. Jeff Hood, from the death chamber. ODOC claimed at the time that Hood presented a security threat because he had previously been arrested for an act of civil disobedience at an anti-death penalty protest. Hood’s conviction was later expunged. Hood filed suit, noting that he had passed the background check necessary to visit prisoners and serve as their spiritual advisor.

Under an agreement reached on January 11, Hood was allowed to accompany Eizember in the execution chamber.

To read the original DPIC article, click here