The 39th Execution of 2013
Johnny Dale Black was executed on December 17, 2013 in Oklahoma. He was pronounced dead at 6:08 p.m. at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. He was the second inmate executed by the state in the past two weeks and the sixth put to death in Oklahoma this year.
Black was convicted of first-degree murder for fatally stabbing Bill Pogue, 54, during a roadside attack near the southern Oklahoma town that left Pogue with 11 stab wounds, broken ribs and punctured lungs. Pogue's son-in-law, Rick Lewis, was also attacked. Lewis suffered more than a dozen wounds but later recovered.
At a hearing before the state Pardon and Parole Board last month, Black begged forgiveness for his actions. But he insisted that he was merely trying to defend his brother, Jimmy Black, from Pogue. The brothers had approached Pogue and Lewis after mistaking their car for that of someone else they had been searching for.
"I deserve to be punished for what I did, but not for defending my family," Johnny Black told the board in November.
About 15 minutes before the execution, fellow death row inmates began banging the doors of their cells in a tribute to the condemned man.
Witnesses to the execution included Black's mother, his attorney and a spiritual adviser. Four members of the victim's family also attended.
Before the lethal drugs were administered, Black, who was lying on a gurney with needles attached to both arms, made eye contact with his mother, and both shook their heads affirmatively.
"This isn't accomplishing anything," Black said. "It's just another death, another family destroyed." Black did not apologize to the victim's family or acknowledge the crime he was convicted of.
Looking at his mother, Black said, "I love everybody. I love you. You can count on that, Momma."
As the lethal drugs were administered, Black took several deep breaths as his mother wept.
The victim's family did not make a statement after the execution. But Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt said Black was sentenced to death by a jury of his peers "for the murder of an innocent grandfather and upstanding member of the community."
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