Johnson was sentenced to death after he was sentenced to the killing of seven people in 1992 as part of the Virginia drug trade. The week before his execution was set by a tense legal battle after he contracted COVID-19 while on death row.
In his final statement, Johnson apologized for his crimes and told the victim’s family he hoped they would find peace. He also thanked the prison staff, chaplain of the prison minister, and his legal team.
“I will say that I was sad before. But I don’t know how to do it. I hope you will find peace, ”he said, according to his lawyer. “For my family, I have always loved you and your love has made me a reality. On the road, I look for shortcuts, I have a good role model, I have been following the side. I am blind and stupid. I am not.”; The same man I am. “
The Supreme Court rejected the final attempt late Thursday by Johnson’s legal team citing his claims of cognitive impairment and COVID-19 diagnosis, citing his infection at Paired with lethal injections would be a cruel and unusual punishment.
The appeal comes after an appeals court ruled on Wednesday a lower court decision to suspend the execution of Johnson and another inmate in the death penalty area infected with the Dustin Hicks virus, whose execution was sentenced to death. It is scheduled to take place on Friday.
“The government had to stop trying to execute Corey Johnson as he was still recovering from the COVID-19 infection he contracted as a result of the government’s own irresponsibility to execute executions during the period. There was an epidemic, ”said Johnson’s lawyer, Donald Salzman. In a statement earlier Thursday
“There is no primary reason not to wait until the ban is over in March to assess whether Mr Johnson’s lungs are healed enough that he does not suffer severe pain during the treatment. Execute “
Following Johnson’s death, his legal team mourned his departure in a statement, saying he should not have been executed.
“We love Corey Johnson and we know him as a gentle spirit who never breaks the law in prison and keeps trying, despite his limitations, to pass the GED, his family and his loved ones in mind. Of us, ”his lawyer said. “We would also like to say that the fact that Corey Johnson should not have been executed does not reduce the pain and loss inflicted on the victim’s family in this case. We wish them peace and quiet. Been healed “
Johnson’s legal team also said he had an IQ 69, which would be below one of the standards proposed by the Supreme Court as a guide for states weighing the executions to meet the brutal and unusual punishment standards of the Supreme Court. Constitution or not
“He’s a mentally retarded man who cannot be executed under the constitution,” Salzman argued Thursday morning. “The government should withdraw Corey’s execution date, or President Trump should give him relief.”
According to the US Department of Justice, Johnson and several accomplices were partners between 1989 and 1992 in a “major drug trafficking conspiracy” in Richmond, Virginia.
The department said that, as part of their operation, Johnson killed seven people, “perceiving there is a hijacking or competition in the drug trade” – Peyton Johnson, Louis Johnson, Bobby Long, Dorothy Armstrong, Anthony Carter, Linwood Chiles and Curtis Thorne Johnson each said in the final statement: “I want you to remember these names”
Johnson was found guilty of seven counts of murder in 1993 by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia jury unanimously recommended seven death sentences.
Thursday’s execution, six days before elected President Joe Biden took office, coincided with a fresh push from more than three dozen members of Congress to give Biden’s incoming administration a priority. Abolition of the death penalty in all jurisdictions
While Biden pledged to abolish the federal death penalty and to incentivize states to stop seeking the death penalty as part of his criminal justice plan, 40 members of Congress wanted to be sure. That practice will end on the first day of his tenure
In his last words, Johnson spoke of his last meal.
“The pizza and strawberry shake are wonderful. But I didn’t get the jelly donuts as ordered, ”he said.“ What’s that? This should be fixed. ”
This story was updated with Johnson’s final statement and clarification from his attorney.