|Updated: 3/16/2012 10:17 am
||Published: 3/15/2012 9:56 pm
A man had no final words before he was put to death.
Thursday night, Shaun Stemple, 46, was executed by lethal injection for killing his wife 16 years ago.
“Timothy Stemple, number 261686, was pronounced dead at 6:11 p.m. The execution has been carried out,” said OK Department of Corrections Spokesperson Jerry Massie.
The 46-year-old is the second person this year in Oklahoma to be executed. Stemple killed his wife in 1996. The man who helped him do it is serving a life sentence.
Terry Hunt, 31, is serving a life sentence and said Stemple should have come clean but he didn’t.
Last attempts by Stemple’s family to stop the death failed.
It took six minutes for Stemple to die in the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester.
When the curtain lifted the warden asked of he had any last words.
Stemple had two minutes to say anything he wanted, but he kept his eyes closed and shook his head no.
“He never claimed responsibility for it. Right down to the very last minute, he didn’t have any last words,” said retired TPD Sgt. Mike Huff.
A new law now allows investigators involved in the case to witness the executions.
Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz, Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan, retired TPD Homicide Detectives Mike Nance and Mike Huff witnesses Stemple’s execution.
“It was clean, sterile, quick, exactly what it wasn’t for Trisha Stemple,” said Huff.
In less than a minute the lethal injection was taking effect.
Stemple opened his eyes, gasped, breathed heavily and then it was over.
His death a stark contrast from his wife’s.
“He knew when his last words and last moment (were), she was living through horror in her last moments.”
Stemple was convicted of working with a teenager to kill his wife for $950,000 in insurance money.
Trisha Ruddick-Stemple was severely beaten and run over by his truck several times along Highway 75 in Tulsa in October 1996.
“Today is not about Shaun,” said Trisha’s little sister Deborah Ruddick-Bird. “Today is about justice and finality and closure for my gorgeous sister Trisha and my family.”
Trisha’s father was out of the country on a missionary trip but a lifelong friend wrote a statement on his behalf. A portion of the statement: “Before the judgment seat of Christ the Lord will determine the eternal outcome for his soul,” wrote Morris Ruddick.
Stemple will be a man they never have to face again.
“Today we put a period at the end of a chapter that has held us captive for far, far too long,” said Trisha’s sister.
They have a future without a woman they loved but also without the man who took her from them.
“Today we say all is well,” said Trisha’s sister. “Today we say it is finished.”
Stemple’s could have five witnesses, he chose his two sisters, 21-year-old daughter and mother and father.
They held each others hands and did not say a word during the execution.
His last meal he requested was a large stuffed crust pizza, half pepperoni, half, Canadian bacon with extra cheese and a 2-liter orange soda.
Each inmate on death row can choose any meal under $15.00 in the McAlester area.
*Picture of Stemple and Trisha Ruddick-Stemple copyright: dagbladet.no