An attorney for a death row inmate who survived a reported botched execution in Alabama on Thursday night says the execution team tortured a cancer-ridden patient when they failed to find his veins.
NBC News reports that Bernard Harcourt, lawyer for inmate Doyle Hamm, 61, said that the team carrying out the lethal injection execution on the inmate failed to find usable veins, resulting in extreme pain and torture for Hamm.
“This was clearly a botched execution that can only be accurately described as torture,” Harcourt said.
UPDATE #DoyleHamm: Just walked out of Holman Prison with Dr. Heath, and the execution on Thursday night was even worse than expected. Just posted update here: https://t.co/82MEFQgDvK About a dozen puncture wounds, bruised and swollen groin, seems they punctured bladder as well. pic.twitter.com/X2wLcci17G
— Bernard E. Harcourt (@BernardHarcourt) February 25, 2018
Hamm, who has been on death row for the past 30 years after he shot and killed motel clerk Patrick Cunningham in 1987, has Stage IV cancer and a history of drug use, which reportedly compromised his veins. Hamm’s lawyer said that the execution team left puncture marks on the inmates arms and legs, and swelling in his groin that left him unable to walk.
The lawyer said all prisoners have a constitution right that protects them from cruel and unusual punishment, yet the botched execution may have hit his femoral artery and punctured the inmate’s bladder.
“They may have hit his femoral artery as well,” Harcourt continued. “Because suddenly there was a lot of blood gushing out. There were multiple puncture wounds on the ankles, calf, and right groin area, around a dozen.”
After the inmate collapsed, authorities removed him from the gurney and gave up. The lawyer said the execution attempt left Hamm temporarily unable to walk.
The first execution attempt occurred after Harcourt requested a medical assessment for the inmate. A judge later ruled that the execution could continue as long as needles were not inserted in the Hamm’s arms. Harcourt warned the court that it would be impossible to find viable veins on Hamm, which would ultimately stop the execution team from successfully carrying out a lethal injection execution.
It’s still unclear when the next scheduled execution attempt will be. Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.
[Feature Photo: Doyle Lee Hamm/ Alabama Department of Corrections]