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Execution Index

Total Executions*
United States (38 states): 700
The South (14 states): 568
North Carolina: 18
*since 1977, when the U.S. Supreme Court again allowed states to apply death sentences

N.C. Governors' Records
Mike Easley
Clemency granted: 0
Clemency denied: 2*

Jim Hunt (1977-1985, 1993-2000)
Clemency granted: 2
Clemency denied: 14

Jim Martin (1985-1993)
Clemency granted: 1
Clemency denied: 2

* Easley denied clemency in the case of Ernest McCarver, whose execution has since been stayed by the U.S. Supreme Court

Fisher's Crime
First-degree murder

Strongest Case for Clemency
With effective representation, there's a good chance Fisher would have been given a life sentence by his jury, rather than a death sentence. Mitigating factors in his case, especially a statement by his victim that he'd never been violent prior to the day of the crime, were never put before his jury.

Method of Execution
Lethal injection or thiopental sodium and procuonium bromide (Pavulon), which induces sleep and then stops all muscle action, including breathing.

Time of Execution
Friday, March 9, 2 a.m.

Final Meal
Prisoners can choose a final meal, served about eight hours prior to the execution.

"Appropriately trained" volunteers work anonymously behind a curtain. Three inject syringes into IV tubes. Only one contains the lethal solution. The volunteers do not know which one.

Official witnesses, named by Forsyth County law enforcement officials, include Forsyth County Sheriff Ronald Barker and his wife, Patricia; Winston-Salem Police Officer Mike Rowe, and three representatives of the county district attorney's office. Five media witnesses include three reporters from the Winston-Salem area, Estes Thompson of the Associated Press and Matthew Eisley of The News and Observer. Angela Johnson's relatives chose not to be witnesses. Witnesses representing Willie Fisher weren't named at press time.

Fisher is survived by eight brothers and sisters and by his son, Willie Fisher Jr.

Cost to N.C. Taxpayers
About $3 million, based on figures from the Death Penalty Information Center in Washington and from a 1993 study of North Carolina cases by Duke University's Terry Sanford Institute for Public Policy, which estimated that murder cases ending in executions cost $2.1 million more than those resulting in sentences of life imprisonment.

Still on N.C. Death Row
Men: 207
Women: 6
African American: 120
Native American: 9
White: 81
Other: 3

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