Harry Mitts Jr. Executed With Ohio's Last Dose of Pentobarbital

Image: Harry Mitts Jr. Executed With Ohio's Last Dose of Pentobarbital

Thursday, 26 Sep 2013 11:59 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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Convicted murderer Harry Mitts Jr. died Wednesday after receiving the state of Ohio's last lethal dose of pentobarbital.

Mitts, 61, was pronounced dead at 10:39 a.m. at the state prison in Lucasville 19 years after he went on a shooting rampage at his Cleveland-area apartment complex, shouting racial slurs and shooting a black man and a police officer, The Plain Dealer reported.

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"I'm so sorry for taking your loved ones' lives," Mitts reportedly told the six family members of his victims who showed up to his execution. "I had no business doing what I did and I've been carrying that burden with me for 19 years. Please don't carry that hatred for me with you in your hearts."

At previous parole and clemency hearings, Mitts claimed he was a changed man after finding God in prison. He said his shooting rampage was the result of heavy drinking and being distraught over his divorce. He had hoped that, by firing on neighbors, he would be killed by police, according to CBS News.

But the Ohio Parole Board and Republican Gov. John Kasich denied all of Mitts' pleas for mercy.

Officials said Mitts was calm and relaxed Wednesday morning as he sipped coffee in his cell.

He also reportedly wrote two letters and instructed that they be sent out after his execution. It's not clear what the letters say or who they are to be sent to, Ricky Seyfang, a spokeswoman with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, told The Plain Dealer.

Mitts' death marked the last time the state of Ohio used pentobarbital, a powerful sedative, as a lethal injection. The state's supply is running low, CBS News reported, and the prison systems will switch to a different execution method on Oct. 4.

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Related stories:

Ohio Ready to Resume Lethal Injections

Virginia Execution Features New Lethal Mixture

Fla. Killer Gore Set to Die by Lethal Injection  

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