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Inmate Survives Death Chamber, Dies of Suspected COVID

Romell Broom was on 'COVID probable' list
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 30, 2020 4:30 AM CST

(Newser) – An Ohio death row inmate who survived an attempt to execute him by lethal injection in 2009 died Monday of possible complications of COVID-19, the state prisons system said. At the time of the 2009 procedure, condemned prisoner Romell Broom was only the second inmate nationally to survive an execution attempt, the AP reports. Broom, 64, has been placed on the "COVID probable list" maintained by the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, spokesperson Sara French said Tuesday. Inmates on that list are suspected to have died of COVID-19, pending a death certificate, she said. The state says 124 inmates have died from confirmed or probable cases of the coronavirus.

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Broom was sentenced to die for raping and killing 14-year-old Tryna Middleton after abducting her in Cleveland in 1984 as she walked home from a football game with two friends. Ohio unsuccessfully tried to put Broom, then age 53, to death by lethal injection on Sept. 15, 2009. The execution was called off after two hours when technicians could not find a suitable vein, and Broom cried in pain while receiving 18 needle sticks. Broom was returned to death row, where he unsuccessfully fought to avoid a second execution date. His most recent execution date was in June, but in the spring Republican Gov. Mike DeWine issued a reprieve and set a new date in March 2022.

(Read more Romell Broom stories.)

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