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September 21, 2023

Oklahoma completes its third execution of 2023 (which is 18th in US this year)

As reported in this local article, "Convicted murderer Anthony Sanchez, 44, was put to death by lethal injection Thursday at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. Prison officials said the execution occurred at 10:19 a.m." Here is more:

Sanchez was convicted in 2006 of first-degree murder in the shooting death of Juli Busken, a 21-year-old dance student who had completed her courses at OU and was preparing to return to her parents' home in Arkansas and enroll in graduate school. The U.S. Supreme Court denied a last-minute petition to pause Sanchez's execution.

Authorities said Busken was raped and shot in the head after being abducted from a Norman apartment complex in 1996. Her body was later found at Lake Stanley Draper southeast of Oklahoma City.

Under state law, Sanchez had to give up a sample of his DNA when he went to prison in Oklahoma in 2002 for second-degree burglary. A DNA profile was eventually made from semen stains found on Busken's clothing. In 2004, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation got a "hit" on the DNA that linked Sanchez to the Busken case.

Attorney General Gentner Drummond and his assistants told U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton in a legal brief last week that the odds that the match was a mistake were 1 in 200 trillion Caucasians, 1 in 20 quadrillion African Americans and 1 in 94 trillion Southwest Hispanics.... 'I am 100% innocent,' Anthony Sanchez wrote in letter to Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt

Sanchez maintained his innocence, but he waived his clemency hearing before the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board. In April, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals ruled 5-0 against Sanchez, who, in a new challenge, claimed his father confessed to Busken’s murder before committing suicide last year. The OSBI concluded the father was not the killer after conducting more DNA tests in February. The OSBI did the testing after getting a sample of the father's blood from the medical examiner's office, which had investigated his death.

I note in the title of this post that this execution was the 18th in the US so far in 2023, which ties the total number of US execution for the full year of 2022. With six more serious execution dates listed by DPIC here, it seems quite possible that 2023 will have the most executions in the US since 2018.  And if a few more execution dates get added, it is still possible that there could end up more executions in 2023 than any year since 2014.

September 21, 2023 at 02:37 PM | Permalink


Nice try by the dad trying to take the fall.

I wonder if the increase in executions has to do with crime becoming a bigger problem again. I’ve never been bothered by the “Support for the DP is decreasing…,” polls, as it is human nature during good times.

It’s when you are looking evil in the face that you want a weapon against the devil.

Posted by: TarlsQtr | Sep 21, 2023 3:34:49 PM

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