It took almost 90 minutes to execute Joseph L. Clark in an Ohio prison yesterday, reports the New York Times. Critics of the death penalty said was the latest in a series of botched executions. Courts around the nation are considering a variety of challenges to lethal injections, which lawyers for death row inmates contend can be needlessly painful and therefore cruel and unusual punishment. In Clark’s case, technicians had trouble finding a suitable vein through which to administer the lethal chemicals, said a prison spokeswoman, Andrea Dean. She speculated that Clark’s veins might have been damaged by drug abuse.
Ohio has executed 21 prisoners since 1999, all by lethal injection. “We have never had an incident like this,” Dean said. “We are going to review our policies and our protocol.”. Clark, 57, was convicted of the 1984 killing of a gas station clerk.