Ohio Killer: I'm Too Fat to Execute

He argues in lawsuit that executioners won't find a vein
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2008 7:00 AM CDT
Richard Cooey claims in a federal lawsuit he's so fat that Ohio executioners would have trouble finding his veins.    (AP Photo/Department of Rehabilitation and Correction)
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(Newser) – A convicted killer and rapist on Ohio's death row is arguing in a lawsuit that he's too fat to be humanely executed. Lawyers for Richard Wade Cooey claim the 5'-7", 275-pound inmate is morbidly obese, and veins suitable for lethal injection would be difficult to find, reports the Columbus Post Dispatch.

The lawsuit claims Cooey suffers migraines and seizures, and that his weight, combined with medication he takes, means he might suffer "unnecessary pain." Cooley dodged a death sentence 5 years ago after lawyers successfully argued that he had incompetent legal representation at his trial. He's now scheduled to be executed in October, and would be the first Ohio execution since an unofficial moratorium while the Supreme Court weighed the constitutionality of lethal injection.

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