Authorities said there was no indication that the loud screams of a Florida death-row inmate, who repeatedly hollered “Murderers!” as he was put to death Thursday evening, resulted from drugs he was given for the execution procedure.
Eric Scott Branch, 47, was sentenced to death for raping and killing Susan Morris, a 21-year-old college student in 1993. Morris’ naked body was found in a shallow grave near a nature trail.
Department of Corrections spokeswoman Michelle Glady said "there was no indication" that Branch’s screams and thrashing on a gurney in his final moments were caused by the lethal injection -- which she said has been confirmed by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Although Branch was sentenced during Florida’s old capital punishment system, which has since been determined unconstitutional, inmates sentenced to death before 2002 are not affected by the state’s new system of sentencing.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.