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Inmate Dodges Execution After Doctors Can’t Find Vein For Lethal Injection

(Photo by Virginia Department of Corrections via Getty Images)

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Anders Hagstrom Justice Reporter
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An Ohio death row inmate had his execution date set back nearly two years after doctors failed to find the veins necessary for lethal injection Wednesday.

Doctors spent roughly 25 minutes scouring the arms and legs of convicted killer Alva Campbell, Jr. for veins suitable for lethal injection, but failed, Dayton Daily News reported. Ohio Corrections Director Gary Mohr then called off the execution upon the doctors’ recommendation and Republican Gov. John Kasich issued the reprieve and set a new execution date for June 5, 2019.

Campbell was convicted and sentenced to death for the fatal shooting of Charles Dials in 1997. Campbell shot Dials and stole the mans car after escaping police custody.

Dials’ brother, sister, and uncle were present at the attempted execution and watched for nearly half an hour as doctors were unable to carry out the sentence.

Campbell was in a sitting position on the execution gurney throughout. Tears streamed down his face as it became clear he wouldn’t be executed. He was allowed to leave after shaking hands with two of the medical staff.

Dials’ family members left without a word.

“I told them that we did our best to comply with the law, to comply with the death warrant, but the methodology that we have to use is lethal injection, and our staff, as good as they are, and as experienced as they are could not get the drugs into the veins,” Mohr said. “I can’t imagine what it’s like for them. I cannot imagine traveling to Lucasville and not having a result. I can’t imagine.”

This is the second time Ohio has failed to administer lethal injection to a  death row inmate. The 2009 attempted execution of convicted murderer Romell Broom went on for nearly two hours before doctors called it off, saying they couldn’t find a vein. Romell remains alive on death row, which bodes well for Campbell’s chances of avoiding his 2019 execution date as well.

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