Crime

Daniel Wayne Cook's Date With Death Scheduled for April

It's on.

After nearly 24 years on death row, convicted murderer Daniel Wayne Cook finally has been assigned a date with death.

The Arizona Department of Corrections announced today that Cook will be executed on April 5, at 10 a.m.

Cook was convicted of the 1987 murders of two men in Lake Havasu City, during which he raped and tortured the men before strangling them to death. He was sentenced to death and remained on death row for more than two decades as his appeals worked their way through the courts.

In November, the Arizona Supreme Court refused to set an execution date for Cook because it was unclear how the state acquired the drug sodium thiopental, a sedative used to knock out the inmate before he's hit with a lethal dose of potassium chloride.

The supply of the drug has dwindled recently because its domestic manufacturer stopped producing it. For another recent execution, the state told the court it acquired the drug from an unnamed British company that wished to remain anonymous because it feared a backlash from anti-death-penalty groups.

Cook's lawyer claimed that because the drug isn't manufactured in the United States, its quality can't be guaranteed and the condemned may suffer some pain before dying.

In January, the court ruled again to delay Cook's execution as it awaited the status of a petition filed to reverse the death sentence.

Earlier this month, the court ruled that Cook's execution could go forward.

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James King
Contact: James King