State Watch

Mississippi executes first inmate in almost 10 years

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Mississippi on Wednesday executed its first inmate in almost 10 years who admitted to killing his estranged wife and sexually assaulting her daughter. 

David Neal Cox received a lethal injection after he pleaded guilty to shooting his wife, Kim Cox, in 2010 and making her watch as he sexually assaulted her 12-year-old daughter three times, The Associated Press reported. He also held one of the daughter’s younger brothers hostage for the night. 

Cox called Kim Cox’s father that night, who is a retired law enforcement officer, to tell him he shot his daughter. Cox allowed Kim to talk to her dad, with her telling her father, “‘Daddy, I’m dying.’”

Cox was given a lethal injection on Wednesday and died within minutes. Cox denied all appeals in the case and said in court documents he was “worthy of death.”

“I want my children to know that I love them very much and that I was a good man at one time,” Cox said before the injection began, as the now 23-year-old stepdaughter whom he assaulted watched. “Don’t ever read anything but the King James Bible.”

He concluded by thanking Burl Cain, Mississippi’s corrections commissioner, saying he was “very kind to me. And that’s all I got to say,” according to the AP.

Lindsey Kirk, the stepdaughter who was assaulted, said in an interview with The Associated Press that Cox sexually assaulted her for years before her mother’s murder.

Cox told Kirk he would kill her if she said anything, but was arrested once Kirk did speak up. However, he was released in April 2010 without standing trial despite being charged with statutory rape, sexual battery, child abuse and possession of methamphetamine.

It is also in question if Cox is responsible for the disappearance of his brother’s wife, the AP noted.

The last executions in Mississippi occurred in 2012 as it is difficult to get the drugs needed for a lethal injection.

Tags death penalty Mississippi

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