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Condemned Killer Ricky McGinn Executed in TexasAired September 27, 2000 - 7:27 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Wolf Blitzer in New York. We're standing by for official confirmation of an execution in Texas, 43- year-old Ricky McGinn. Let's go to Texas.
LARRY FITZGERALD, PRISON SPOKESMAN: Tonight, the state of Texas executed Ricky Nolan McGinn. He was pronounced dead at 6:23. He was taken from his holding cell shortly after 6 o'clock, 6:02. He gave his last statement at 6:13. In his last statement he said, "Robin, you know this ain't right. Mama, Adam, Mike, Sonny, Michelle, you all know I love you. Tell everyone I said hi, and that I love them and that I will see them on the other side, OK. And now I just pray that if there's anything against me that God takes me home. I don't want nobody to be mad at me -- nobody. I don't want nobody to be bitter. Keep clean hearts and I will see you all on the other side, OK. I love you all. Stay sweet. I love you."
As is our custom, we have pool reporters who witnessed the execution. Like to hear from Mike Graczyk, Associated Press, he'll give you some details about the execution.
MIKE GRACZYK, ASSOCIATED PRESS: I think you have the statement. I'll just go through some of the activity in the death chamber. When we walked in, he was already strapped to the gurney. He had on a light blue shirt. He was covered with a sheet up to his armpits and all you could see was the white leather belt that diagonally goes across his chest. He made no acknowledgement to the witnesses on the victim's side of the chamber. But when -- apparently, when his family walked in he smiled, he blew a kiss, and kind of pursed his lips to mouth a kiss, and then he nodded to them as they walked in.
As you heard, he gave his final statement, addressed most of the people by name. As -- when he got through with the statement, he closed his eyes and he smiled, he sputtered, then he made like a slight groan as the air seemed to be coming out of his lungs. His eyes were closed when he went unconscious. His mouth was slightly open. His face was rather pink when we got in there and you could see it changing from pink to a grayish white.
I could hear the sobs on the side of the chamber where his family was, but there was no reaction from the victim's witnesses -- I was on that side. There was six of them, they were all huddled up close to the glass. Two of the people initially had their arms around one another, and then at one point one of the women started comforting one of the gentlemen who was standing there. There was one woman in there who was seated in a wheelchair and she was right up against the glass.
And that's about it from my side. Any questions? Anybody else?
BLITZER: That was Mike Graczyk of the Associated Press describing what he eyewitnessed, the execution of 43-year-old Ricky McGinn, executed just minutes ago for the rape and murder of his 12- year-old stepdaughter in 1993, Stephanie Flanary.
Tony Clark is standing by outside the prison. Tony, remind our viewers why this execution is drawing all of this attention.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A lot of, oh, God, just a lot of spiritual things were going on. There was a spiritual adviser in there. The family was very -- they all touched pretty much the whole time. It was very emotional. There was a lot of crying. I don't know which of his brothers was which, but one of them at one point had said...
TONY CLARK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Sorry.
As I was trying to say, Wolf, this is the 232nd execution in Texas, and so it's become a political issue. This was the first time -- Ricky McGinn's case was the first time that the governor has used his authority to grant a 30-day reprieve. He did this in the case of Ricky McGinn to allow time for DNA testing. The testing came back, matched him very closely to evidence found on the girl's body, and so at that point this execution went forward and there was really nothing the governor could do in this case -- Wolf.
BLITZER: OK, Tony Clark outside the prison in Huntsville, Texas, where Ricky McGinn has just been executed. We will have much more on this on "THE WORLD TODAY" at the top of the hour. But for now, I'm Wolf Blitzer in New York. "CROSSFIRE" is next.
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