Lawyers for five Missouri death row inmates are pressing the state to provide the names of members of its execution team after the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that one was a convicted stalker. The lawyers said the executioner’s criminal record raises questions about his “temperament and suitability” to help with executions. The newspaper reported that David Pinkley, a licensed practical nurse then on probation, worked on Missouri executions and was permitted to join a federal team that executed Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh in Indiana in 2001.
Pinkley, originally charged with felonies for allegedly stalking and damaging the property of a man who had a relationship with his estranged wife, pleaded no contest to misdemeanors and received a suspended imposition of sentence. State and federal prison officials knew this background. Three St. Louis-area legislators on a committee that oversees the Department of Corrections criticized the agency for letting a probationer work at executions.