Rolling Executed By Lethal Injection
POSTED: 5:38 pm EDT October 25, 2006
STARKE, Fla. -- Danny Rolling was executed Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. for the 1990 murders and mutilations of five college students in Gainesville.
Rolling was strapped on a gurney, placed on a heart monitor and wheeled into the execution chamber late Wednesday afternoon, where the eight carefully marked syringes used in a lethal injection awaited.
The first two syringes contained sodium pentothal, which rendered Rolling unconscious. The third contained a saline solution that was used as a flushing agent. Another two syringes containing pancuronium bromide were then administered to paralyze him. Another syringe of saline solution was administered, and the final two doses of potassium chloride delivered the lethal doses that stopped his heart from beating.
Rolling was declared dead at 6:13 p.m.
Sadie Darnell, who was a spokeswoman for the Gainesville Police Department at the time of the murders, said she believes the process is so humane that it might disturb the families of the victims.
"One of my concerns is that for the family members who do witness that they may be struck and affected by how easy it is, that it's a gentle, mild form of death," she said.
Before the execution, Dianna Hoyt, whose stepdaughter, Christa Hoyt, was one of the victims, said she would rather have seen Rolling get executed by the electric chair like infamous serial killer Ted Bundy did when he was executed in Florida. Lethal injection became the alternative form of execution in 2000.
"I don't understand," said Hoyt, who attended the execution. "When he (Rolling) was convicted, it was the electric chair, and I really felt like it needed to go back to that."
Rolling's last-minute appeal contending that the chemicals used in Florida's execution process could cause severe pain was turned down Wednesday by the U.S. Supreme Court just a half hour before the execution. The court had previously turned down the same arguments in two other Florida executions this fall.