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'Ice Pick Killer' Danny Bible Is Too Sick For Execution By Lethal Injection, Lawyers Say

Danny Bible was sentenced to death in 2003 for four gruesome murders and more than a half-dozen rapes.

By Stefan Lembo-Stolba

The infamous "ice pick killer" of Texas is set to be executed Wednesday night, as his lawyers hope a last-minute appeal citing poor health could spare his life.

Danny Bible was sentenced to death in 2003 for four gruesome murders and more than a half-dozen rapes, including the brutal stabbing of a woman with an ice pick in 1979. 

As his execution approaches, his lawyers are trying to halt his imminent death by lethal injection.

“Because of his poor health, Mr. Bible has severely compromised peripheral veins, meaning it will be difficult, if not impossible, to establish two functioning IVs in his veins, creating a substantial risk of either a botched execution or an aborted execution attempt,” Bible’s attorney Jeremy Schepers wrote in an appeal to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday, according to the Texas Tribune in Austin.

Raising the fear that complications could make for a prolonged and painful execution, Bible’s attorneys have suggested firing squads or nitrogen gas as alternatives to the state’s planned method.

State prosecutors opposed Bible’s plea for leniency, saying that he was a serial murderer and rapist, the Tribune reported.

A federal appeals court rejected Bible’s lawyers appeal on Tuesday, just one day before the death row inmate was scheduled to die. According to reporting by the Tribune, Bible’s lawyers have indicated they are seeking a last decision from the U.S. Supreme Court. 

The attorneys' attempts at stopping his execution come on the heels of several high-profile lethal injections failing because of health difficulties. In February, the execution of conivcted murderer Doyle Hamm in Alabama was called off after officials failed to insert a needle into the cancer patient’s veins.

A similar situation in 2017 led Ohio to halting the execution of Alva Campbell, who had cancer and was too sick to lay for his injection. Campbell was sentenced to death for murdering an 18-year-old during a carjacking. 

Bible, 66, was first sentenced to 25 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to the murder of Pam Hudgins in 1983. After being paroled in 1992, Bible raped five young family members and was captured again in 1998 after he raped and attacked someone in Louisiana, according to the Harris County District Attorney in Texas.

While being interrogated after his last arrest, Bible also admitted to the decades-old unsolved murder of Inez Deaton, who was raped and stabbed in 1979, according to the DA.

“Some criminals’ actions are so heinous, they earn the label ‘worst of the worst,’” Harris County DA Kim Ogg said in a statement. “The jury who listened to the facts and saw the evidence of the crimes Danny Bible committed clearly reached that conclusion by sentencing him to death.”

It's unclear if Bible's lawyers will receive any response from the nation's highest court before the execution, which is scheduled for 6 p.m.

[Photo: Texas Department of Criminal Justice]

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