Local & Regional
10:17 am
Thu October 14, 2010

Execution to Move Forward

Oklahoma City, OK – Deal reached in Okla. inmate's execution request

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) A federal judge has dismissed a filing by a converted Buddhist to have his spiritual adviser present in the death chamber when he is put to death Thursday.

The request by Donald Ray Wackerly was thrown out Wednesday after Wackerly's attorney said a compromise was reached with prison officials.

Attorney Micheal Salem says a Buddhist monk will be allowed to enter the execution chamber after Wackerly is pronounced dead. The inmate had sought in the filing to have the adviser inside the chamber when the lethal drugs were administered.

Salem says the monk will be permitted to perform "several rituals consistent with Buddhist principles" and spend 15 to 20 minutes with Wackerly's body.

Wackerly is scheduled to die for the 1996 shooting death of Laotian fisherman Pan Sayakhoummane (sy-ak-hoo-MAHN'-ee) during a robbery in Sequoyah County.