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Execution Index

Numbers include the execution of Ronnie Frye, if carried out on Friday


Total Executions*
United States (38 states): 729
The South: 628
North Carolina: 19
*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: 6
Executed: 3

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

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

Frye's Crime
First-degree murder

Strongest Case for Clemency
Frye's original attorney, Tom Portwood, was an admitted alcoholic who drank at least a pint of rum daily prior to and during the trial. He failed to do any research into Frye's background for mitigating factors, which included severe child abuse and drug addiction. Frye's attorneys and the jurors who originally sentenced him to death say those circumstances would have earned him a life sentence instead of the death penalty.

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, Aug. 31, 2 a.m.

"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.

Witnesses include: Catawba County District Attorney David Flaherty Jr.; Hickory Police Sgt. Greg Shook; Catawba County Sheriff David Huffman; chaplain Ed Yount; two members of the victim's family, Derek Cline and Leon Kay Jr., and five members of the media. Frye's brother David was also expected to attend.

Frye is survived by his brother, David Frye; half-siblings, Angie Frye, Chad Frye and Tiffany Cooper; father, Benson Frye; stepmother Carline Frye Hudson; and stepmother Shirley Frye.

Cost to N.C. Taxpayers
About $3 million, based on figures from the Death Penalty InformationCenter 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
Total: 220
Men: 214
Women: 6
African American: 122
Native American: 9
White: 85
Other: 4

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