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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Huckleberries Online

Trib: Whistling A Different Tune

Richard Albert Leavitt was executed by lethal injection Tuesday, 28 years after the murder of Danette Elg of Blackfoot. As reported by the four journalists who witnessed the procedure - from the time Leavitt was escorted into the execution chamber until his death was pronounced at 9:25 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time - the process was solemn, dignified and almost militarily precise. "Six correctional officers, wearing surgical masks and stationed three to a side like pallbearers, lifted the inmate off the gurney and strapped him to the execution table inside the Idaho state prison on Tuesday," wrote The Associated Press' Rebecca Boone. "They attached intravenous lines to Richard Leavitt's arms and electrodes to the convicted killer's chest and stomach to measure his breathing and heart rate." Later, Idaho Department of Correction Director Brent Reinke (shown in Greg Kreller Idaho Press Tribune/AP photo) said: "I am grateful that we have four media witnesses here to tell you what they saw. Our goal was to make this as professional as possible with dignity and respect, and I believe we met that mark." What a stunning reversal/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: So what was hurt by having the media witness the entire execution process involving Richard Albert Leavitt?

D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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