- Jimin Cannon was convicted of murdering 20-year-old mother Sheronda Clark with a butcher knife in 1995.
- Cannon claimed at a parole hearing last month that he killed Clark in self-defense.
- Cannon will be executed on July 20, 2023 at 10 a.m. in the state of Oklahoma.
Oklahoma is preparing to execute a man Thursday who stabbed a Tulsa woman with a butcher knife after escaping from a prison work center in 1995.
Jamin Cannon, 51, is scheduled to receive a lethal injection at 10 a.m. at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlister. It will be the second execution in Oklahoma this year and the ninth since the state resumed lethal injection in 2021.
Cannon was convicted of killing Sheronda Clark, 20, a mother of two with whom Cannon was living in a Tulsa apartment after escaping from a prison work center in southwest Oklahoma weeks earlier. At the time, Cannon was serving a 15-year sentence for the violent assault of another woman who, according to prosecutors, was raped and severely beaten with a claw hammer, iron and kitchen toaster, leaving her with permanent injuries.
A last-minute appeal seeking a stay of execution that Cannon claims is Native American and not subject to Oklahoma’s jurisdiction was pending in a federal appeals court late Wednesday, records show.
Cannon claimed at a parole hearing before the Oklahoma Board of Pardons and Paroles last month that he killed Clark in self-defense.
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“I am deeply saddened that the process of defending my life and the actions he initiated against me ever took place,” Cannon told the board via video feed from state prison. “The end of human life was never intended, planned or premeditated.”
Cannon’s attorney, Mark Henrickson, also told the panel that Cannon’s trial and appellate attorneys were ineffective for failing to present evidence that supported his claim of self-defense. Henriksen said his trial attorney did not present any witnesses or exhibits and rested after the prosecution presented its case.
In a statement sent to The Associated Press this week, Henriksen said the state’s decision to proceed with Cannon’s execution amounted to a “historic brutality.”
“Mr. Cannon has suffered over fifty years of abuse and neglect in his care,” Henrickson said. “He is a model prisoner sitting in his cell. He is nearly deaf, blind and close to death from natural causes. The decision to go ahead with this particular execution is obscene.”
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But prosecutors from the attorney general’s office and Clark’s adult daughters have urged the state to execute Cannon.
Clark’s oldest daughter, Yeh-Sean White, told the Pardon and Parole Board last month that Cannon had never expressed remorse for his actions in 28 years and urged the board to reject the pardon, which it did on a 3-2 vote.
“My mother was never given mercy,” she said. “To this day he still blames his actions on my mother.”
Oklahoma currently uses a three-drug lethal injection protocol that begins with the sedative midazolam, followed by the paralytic vicuronium bromide and finally potassium chloride, which stops the heart. The state had one of the nation’s busiest death chambers until problems in 2014 and 2015 led to a de facto moratorium.
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Richard Glossop was just hours away from being executed in September 2015 when prison officials discovered he had received the wrong lethal drug. It was later learned that the same fake drug was used to execute a prisoner in January 2015.
The drug mix-up followed a botched execution in April 2014 in which inmate Clayton Lockett struggled on a gurney for 43 minutes before dying in his lethal injection — and when the state’s prisons chief ordered executioners to stop.