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White House: Oklahoma execution not done humanely

Published: Wednesday, April 30, 2014 12:53 p.m. CST • Updated: Wednesday, April 30, 2014 1:19 p.m. CST

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says a botched execution of a death row inmate in Oklahoma fell short of the humane standards required when the death penalty is carried out.

Officials halted Clayton Lockett's execution Tuesday when he convulsed violently and tried to lift his head after a doctor declared him unconscious. He later died of an apparent heart attack.

White House spokesman Jay Carney says President Barack Obama believes evidence shows the death penalty doesn't effectively deter crime. But he says Obama believes some crimes are so heinous that the death penalty is merited. He says the crimes in Lockett's case are indisputably heinous.

But Carney says the U.S. has a fundamental standard that the death penalty must be carried out humanely. He says everyone would recognize that this case fell short.

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Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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